Poll: 78% of Israelis Don’t Trust Iran on Nuclear Issue
According to a new poll published Sunday night by Israel’s Channel 10 TV station an overwhelming majority of Israelis don’t trust recent conciliatory Iranian gestures when it comes to resolving the Islamic Republic’s nuclear standoff with the West.
78% of respondents said that recent declarations from Iran concerning dialogue with the United States are not genuine, and only 12% said they thought Iran’s statements were honest and that Iran would indeed be willing to bend on the issue of its nuclear development in exchange for an easing of Western sanctions. 10% of those polled said that they didn’t know one way or another.
58% of Israelis believe that the recent warming of ties between Iran and the West will not help at all in reaching an agreement between U.S. President Obama and Iranian President Rouhani on the issue of Iran’s nuclear program. 29% said that they believed that Iran and the U.S. will eventually be able to formulate an agreement, and 12% could not answer the question.
According to the poll, 58% of Israelis think that Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu was right to order the Israeli United Nations delegation to leave the room when Iranian President Rouhani addressed the UN General Assembly last week. 30% said they thought the decision was wrong and 12% said they did not know.
Channel 10 did not release figures on how many people were polled, or what the margin of error was for the survey.
The publication of the numbers came as Netanyahu landed in the U.S. Sunday morning for a scheduled meeting with President Obama. As he departed Israel, Netanyahu pledged to “tell the truth in the face of the sweet-talk and the onslaught of smiles” from Iran.
Jerusalem has long led calls for the international community to combat Iran’s nuclear program, and is worried about the recent warming of ties between Iran and the West following the election of the new silk tongued Iranian president Hassan Rouhani.
Also on Sunday, Iran’s foreign minister Javad Zarif drew a parallel between Israel’s relations with the Palestinians and the Holocaust, in an interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos.
In contrast to public opinion in Israel, an unofficial poll on the Washington Post’s website which boasted 21914 respondents at the time of publication, said that 84% were in favor of U.S. efforts to seek improved relations with Iran, while 16% opposed the efforts.