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Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Israelis: Give PA one last chance, then strike

Jerusalem Newswire November 30, 2004

JERUSALEM - Nearly two-thirds of Israelis believe the post-Arafat Palestinian Authority should be given one last chance to honor its peace obligations, or face a full-scale Israeli military effort to eliminate the scourge of Palestinian Arab terror.

Asked what Israel should do if the new PA leadership continues to espouse Yasser Arafats policy of anti-Jewish terrorism by this time next year, 60 percent of respondents in a new public opinion poll voted for abandoning peace efforts and dealing with the situation militarily.

Nineteen percent believed Israel should continue to seek a diplomatic settlement with the PA, despite its refusal to curb the ongoing Islamic terror.

Showing public disapproval for Prime Minister Ariel Sharons policies, only one-third of Israelis backed the idea of conducting a unilateral withdrawal from Judea, Samaria and Gaza in the face of persistent Palestinian non-compliance.

An overwhelming 80 percent of respondents felt a sovereign Palestinian Arab state ruled by known terrorists would pose an existential or very grave threat to Israel.

The poll was conducted by telephone from November 18-22 among a random sampling of 528 adult Israelis. It was carried out by Maagar Mohot Interdisciplinary Research and Consulting Institute Ltd.