My question about this article is, what does Ha'aretz (or the ADL, for that matter) have to gain my making Israelis think that American opinion of them is more positive than it is?
ADL polls: Americans back Israel, Europeans don't By Amiram Barkat
Americans continue to stand solidly behind Israel in the conflict with the Palestinians, and overwhelmingly support the disengagement from Gaza as "a bold step for peace," according to an Anti-Defamation League survey released yesterday.
According to the survey of American attitudes toward Israel and the Middle East, 71 percent of those polled expressed support for the disengagement plan, 52 percent believed Israel was working harder for peace than the Palestinians, and 43 percent said they sympathized with Israel.
"It is apparent from the survey that Israel's bold initiatives to bring security and peace to its people resonate with the American people," said Abraham H. Foxman, the ADL's national director, at a Jerusalem press conference.
"The consistency of the high level of support for Israel by Americans, and their improved views of the new Palestinian leadership, show them to be fair in their assessment and understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, despite ongoing propaganda campaigns and efforts to isolate and delegitimize the Jewish state," he added.
I ask you, would this lede be any less representative:
Americans Generally Ambivalent Towards Israel by Y.T.
While standing more solidly behind Israel than their European counterparts, an ADL poll of Americans reveals ambivalence towards the state and its policies. According to the survey, an overwhelming 71 percent of those surveyed view the disengagement from Gaza as "a bold step for peace." However, barely half feel that Israel is working harder for peace than the Palestinians, and 57 percent sympathized with either the Palestinians or neither side in the conflict.
Israelis know that they lost European public opinion some time ago, although I'd point out that, while 39 percent of Europeans viewed Sharon negatively, 42 percent reported no opinion either way. There may be considerable room for winning over undecided European opinion, if someone appropriately placed wants to do that. The article observes correctly, though, that further radical Islamist attacks in Europe won't help the matter.
However, you'd think that if Israel's support in America was wavering, it would be in the best interests of the Israelis to loudly advertise this fact. (I'd compare what, say, the Jerusalem Post had to say about this poll, but I can't get articles to load on their site tonight. Oh well.)
One possibility is that we're caught in a round of dueling polls. The number that does have the Israeli government on the edge of its seat, after all, is approval of the disengagement, both at home and in important backer countries like the U.S.