American Jewish Opinion About the Future of the West Bank: A Reanalysis of American Jewish Committee Surveys
American Jewish opinion about the Arab-Israel conflict matters for both American and Israeli politics as well as for American Jewish life. This paper undertakes an analysis of that opinion based on American Jewish Committee (AJC) annual polls. Recently, the AJC made the individual-level datasets for the 2000–05 period available to researchers. The paper focuses on opinion about the future of the West Bank (including East Jerusalem), because survey questions on that topic are relatively straightforward. Standard background variables (religious, cultural, political, and demographic) are all seen to be modestly related to opinion about the West Bank (in simple crosstabulations and multivariate analysis). However, with the exception of Orthodoxy, no factor is dramatically connected to particular opinions. Also, despite evidence of a positive association between age and emotional attachment to Israel, age is also positively associated with willingness to accept proposed West Bank changes. Finally, a generalized concern about security seems to account for some of the diversity of opinion about the West Bank unexplained by the standard background variables.
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