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US youth are more critical of Israel than other Americans

June 12, 2024 at 7:33 pm

Protestors, from different religions, beliefs and groups, wearing red clothes gather at Lafayette Park in front of the White House to protest US President Joe Biden’s policy in the Israeli war in the Gaza Strip on 08 June, 2024 [Fatih Aktaş/Anadolu Agency]

At a time when public opinion is generally divided over US President Joe Biden’s stance on the war in Gaza, a survey by the Pew Research Centre showed that young Americans are more critical of Israel’s war in Gaza than other citizens.

Despite intense debate in Washington about the war-related agenda and how the war will affect Biden’s re-election chances, the survey also found that many Americans are not following the issue closely or paying much attention.

40 per cent of survey respondents said they were unsure whether Biden had struck the right balance.

Among Americans ages 18 to 29, 46 per cent of respondents said Israel’s response to the 7 October attack was unacceptable.

21 per cent said it was acceptable, while the rest said they were unsure.

The views of older Americans were quite different from those of younger people.

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While 53 per cent of those 65 and older supported Israel’s response, 29 per cent called it unacceptable.

Biden (81), who considers himself a staunch supporter of Israel, strongly defended Israel’s right to respond to the attack carried out by Hamas.

Despite his military and diplomatic support for Israel, Biden also criticised Israeli leaders for not doing enough to protect civilians in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

As the US elections approach, all attention is focused on the state of Michigan, where Biden must win the election in November, where he will compete against former president, Donald Trump.

Muslims and a large segment of Americans of Arab descent in Michigan may play a decisive role in this competition.

The poll also showed mixed views among Democrats on Biden’s handling of the war in Gaza.

34 per cent of Democrats said Biden favoured Israel, and 29 per cent said he had struck the right balance.

The survey, in which 12,693 people participated, also revealed the sharply critical views of US Muslims towards Israel.

21 per cent of Muslims found Hamas’s 7 October attack acceptable.

According to the poll, 62 per cent of US Jews said Israel’s handling of the war in Gaza was acceptable.

Although the Jewish community is more critical of Israel than Evangelical Protestants, this rate is higher than the national average.

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