an orthodox woman and a muslim woman shake hands, surrounded by children
Jewish Israelis and Palestinians at a coexistence meeting in the West Bank, July 22, 2015. (JTA/Nati Shohat/Flash90)

Arab Israelis are more positive than Jews about Israel, survey finds

Arab Israelis are more likely to describe Israel’s “overall situation” as good than their Jewish counterparts, a survey found.

Some 66 percent of Arab Israelis said their country’s situation was “good” or “very good,” according to a survey released Sunday by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University. Only 43.9 percent of Israeli Jews agreed with that statement.

Arabs were also more likely than Jews to assess positively Israel’s performance in different fields and on various issues. In the fields of medicine and health, economic stability, education and science, and on the issues of the state’s attentiveness to the needs of its citizens and reduction of social gaps, a larger percentage of Arab Israelis assessed the country’s achievements as “very” or “moderately good.”

For example, 93 percent of Arabs and 67 percent of Jews had a positive view of Israel’s achievements in medicine and health, and 46 percent of Arabs and 19 percent of Jews had a positive view of their country’s achievements in reducing social gaps.

Only in one field — national security — did a higher portion of Jews, 83 percent, assess the state’s achievements in a more positive light than Arabs, at 74 percent.

However, the Arabs were less likely to show national pride than their Jewish counterparts, with 51.1 percent and 86.1 percent, respectively, saying they are proud of their Israeli identity.

A majority of both groups — 61 percent of Arabs and 73 percent Jews — are optimistic about Israel’s future.

The survey was released a day ahead of Israel’s Independence Day, which commenced on Monday evening. It was conducted over telephone by the Midgam Research institute on April 18-19 and included the responses of 600 adults, with a margin of error of 4.1 percent.

JTA

JTA news agency