Poll: Israelis Optimistic Despite Security, Economic Threats

May 3, 2012  

The Israeli public believes that both wars and social protests can lead to economic growth, according to a survey conducted by the Orot Israel College, ahead of a conference on growth and crisis to be held next Monday.

Rabbi Prof. Neria Gutel, President of the Orot Israel College, told Arutz Sheva on Thursday that the findings are pleasantly surprising.

β€œ48% of Israelis believe that the social protests will ultimately bring about economic growth, compared to 23% who believe that the situation will get worse,” he said.

The poll also sought to find out which crisis the Israeli public thinks is a greater existential threat, the social one or the security one.

It found that 54% of Israelis believe that wars, despite the pain associated with them and perhaps because of it, lead to national growth in a wide range of areas, while 35% stated they believe that wars have deepened the crisis.

The poll also found that 33.6% of respondents believe that the security crisis is a more significant existential threat to Israel. In contrast, 27.2% said they believe that the social crisis is more of an existential threat to Israel. 36.4% believe that both crises are equally existential threats.

The data show that 70% of respondents who identified as being religious think that war brings economic growth, compared to 49% of the secular public.

Another surprising figure is that 51% of the religious public believes that a security crisis is more of an existential threat than an economic-social crisis, compared to 25% of secular Israelis.

According to Rabbi Prof. Neria Gutel, β€œThe poll reflects not only national strength but also national optimism. Pessimism is probably more a thing of the press than actually reflecting public opinion. Most Israelis believe that even difficulties and crises will, at least at the end of the day, lead to growth.”

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