BBC spots sharp climb in negative view of Israel in the U.S.

BBC World Service poll, out today. Page 19:

Evaluations of Israel’s influence in the world are still broadly unfavourable. However, unlike countries that have seen their negative views worsen, Israel has seen a very slight improvement. [49 percent unfavorable views on average in 25 countries, to 21 percent favorable view]…

Despite the static nature of the overall trend, views of individual countries have shifted in both directions. Perhaps the most interesting shift is the change in American opinion, as the US public is now divided rather than favourable in its rating. While positive ratings have remained quite stable since 2010 (43 %), negative ratings are up by ten points (41%).

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.
Posted in Israel/Palestine

{ 115 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. lysias says:

    I don’t think this change is thanks to any change in coverage by the mainstream media.

    I wonder where people are suddenly getting their unorthodox information from.

    • Hostage says:

      The Wall Street Journal just reported that Israel’s security psychosis is going to require an additional $20 billion in US taxpayer-funded treatments to upgrade its ailing military “to help it manage potential threats stemming from popular upheavals in the Arab world.” link to online.wsj.com

      I guess that’s code for “We are demanding Mubarak’s cut of the protection racket”. At any rate, that is bound to tick-off those Americans who are having their wages and benefits cut-back.

  2. petersz says:

    55% people dislike North Korea, 59% dislike Iran and 49% dislike Israel. That makes Israel the fourth least liked country in the world after North Korea, Iran and Pakistan! Perhaps BDS is begining to work after all.

    • Citizen says:

      The poll this time in 2008 summarized:
      “As was the case a year ago, Iran and Israel receive the most negative ratings. While negative views of Israel have eased over the last year from 57 to 52 per cent, negative views of Iran’s influence have held steady at 54 per cent making it the most negatively rated of the countries tested. Pakistan follows Israel as the third most poorly rated country.

      Similar to last year, Japan is among the most positively rated countries. However, it comes a close second to Germany which is included in the ratings for the first time. The European Union comes third.

      The country with the greatest improvement is Russia.”

  3. Potsherd2 says:

    Japan’s positive rating of Israel is among the lowest. I wonder why.

    • Chu says:

      Egypt is 2nd on that list. Only 5% in Egypt having a positive view of Israel. (Japan is 4%)

      • Citizen says:

        Chu, also:
        A major shift in perceptions of the US has taken place in Egypt, where a majority of 50 pe
        cent now has negative views of the US. This represents a 21-point increase since 2010,
        while positive views decreased by 19 points to 26 per cent.

        Since only 5% of Egyptians have a positive view of Israel, and Egyptians have increased their negative view of the US by 21% in 2010 (to 50%), doesn’t this spell trouble for the Egyptian-Israel treaty paid for by US tax dollars? Even considering the Egyptian military’s dependence on the US?

    • Koshiro says:

      The following are just my personal impressions:

      Japanese people are skeptical of just about everybody when it comes to “influence in the world”. Consider that only 39% of the polled Japanese asserted a mostly positive influence even for their own country!

      Japanese people have no religious or cultural connection to Israel whatsoever, their economic relations are comparably unimportant, and generally speaking modern Japanese people do prefer for countries to mind their own business. It can also not be denied that there is no real taboo against antisemitism in Japan and that Japanese are not liable to support Israel out of a feeling of guilt or responsibility. (Although the antisemitic trash that is published in Japan is a fringe phenomenon generally considered to be on the level as wacky conspiracy theories such as UFOs and the like.)

      • Potsherd2 says:

        Yes, I see that Japan doesn’t seem to like anybody very much. otoh, their dislike rate is even lower. Seems like they don’t really care much about other countries. Other countries seem to like Japan relatively well, though.

        • Koshiro says:

          To an extent. As I said, they do not even see their own country’s role in the world as positive, although almost everybody else does.

          In my experience, Japanese people generally don’t think much of international politics. They have little understanding of, and little support for, international relations that go beyond trade and tourism. Another aspect of this slight isolationism is the aversion modern Japanese have to military matters, especially when it comes to international deployments.
          It’s logical, too. From a historical perspective, isolationism and noninterference in other countries’ affairs were the norm for Japan. Its short but terrible imperialist phase was essentially an aberration, one which yielded disastrous results for the country.

      • zafarz says:

        Well said Koshiro. Aren’t you in the least bit worried you will be labeled an anti-semite now. Sajepress

        • Koshiro says:

          Not really. Everybody who does not toe the hasbara line is going to called an anti-semite by someone. It’s really lost its sting due to overuse.

        • RoHa says:

          Being called an antisemite is like being excommunicated in the Middle Ages. If it hasn’t happened to you, you are a nobody.

          (But if it has, you might still be a nobody.)

  4. All those millions spent on hasbara whilst lining the pockets of media and politicians, smearing the independent thinkers and trying to block open debate – and all they can achieve is tepid approval of Israel. As the reality becomes more apparent it will only get worse for them. No wonder they sound desperate with their pathetic attempts to call opposition to apartheid ‘delegitimisation’.

    • pabelmont says:

      If only governments behaved as their citizens appear to wish.
      If only USA citizens got good information from MSM.

      If only. But the good times are a-coming.

    • munro says:

      “All those millions spent on hasbara whilst lining the pockets of media and politicians, smearing the independent thinkers and trying to block open debate…”

      you can add the rabid 24/7 puscht to whip up anti-Arab hatred (Geller and Horowitz cancel out Goodman and Schwerner) and facilitating the election of racist, misogynistic, homophobic Zionist Dispensationalist Christians (who are dismantling our civilization as we speak).

  5. lobewyper says:

    This finding should be extremely alarming to the Israeli government. As I read it, this amounts to a ten percentage point increase in the number of US citizens holding predominantly negative views of Israel within a single year. As lysias noted, the change couldn’t have resulted from more “balanced” coverage of I-P by the MSM. Seems to me that it’s got to be due mainly to the internet…Hang on, what about the Mavi Marmara attack and the resulting slaughter of innocents last May?

    • seafoid says:

      I would say the Mavi Marmara and Goldstone did the damage. Lieberman alone must be worth 5 percentage points.
      Contrary to the opinions of its right wingers, Israel desperately needs the support of the goys. This is very bad news. The Israeli PR effort during the Arab intifada has been dreadful as well.

    • annie says:

      a ten percentage point increase from 30% to 40% represents a 25% jump in the total percentage of people who view israel negatively.

      probably a reflection of kids entering adulthood as non zionists. (college campuses) sweeeet.

      by next year it should hit at least 50%. we’re growing exponentially.

      • Chaos4700 says:

        Our political voice, however, is more atrophied than ever.

        • annie says:

          chaos, we’ll probably start seeing a backlash wrt this observation. the more polarizing israel becomes the more likely awareness of that polarization crystallizes. the more awareness crystallizes the people are going to wonder why there’s no reflection of that in congress.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          So? What will it amount to? Most Americans want pensions. Most Americans want health care coverage. Most Americans want the top 10% of the wealthy to start paying fair taxes.

          So what if most Americans turn against Israel? What are we going to do, exactly? Vote about it?

        • Potsherd2 says:

          We need a revolution. Liberate America!

        • Citizen says:

          Here is another recent poll that shows The American public definitely wants those making over $100,000 a year to get a tax hike, and those makig over $250,000 to get an even bigger tax hike. The poll also, inter alia, reveals the American public (regardless of party or independent) would wack at least 18% of basic defense spending. That’s by far what the American public thinks is a big waste and money better spent elsewhere. Obama’s proposal would wack 4%, the House bill would wack 2%.

          Another significant area the American public wants to wack is military aid to foreign countries Neither Obama nor the House want to wack any of such aid. Hence the American public is not even represented in this area by the WH or Congress.

          Hence the American public as a whole basically supports the Pauls’ view that US defense spending and military aid to foreign countries should be drastically cut because such huge spending in those areas is not in their best interest and the wasted money is needed at home. Yet neither the Republican nor the Democrat leadership is listening. Nor is our MSM.
          So much for the health of the US democracy.

          (As to spending, the American public would spend much more than Obama or the House on job training and higher Education.)
          link to worldpublicopinion.org

  6. Chu says:

    They should be thankful it was so high, for such an extended amount of time. When their leadership openly insults our leadership, numbers like this are inevitable. And Merkel said herself they haven’t done anything to advance the peace process. There are an anchor in the mud on our foreign policy, holding us back from new challenges in the world. And that’s not to say our foreign policy is ideal, either. It would be one step in the right direction.

  7. Miura says:

    Israel had 33% positive rating among Americans 4 years ago, the first time it was included in the BBC/PIPA survey. Interestingly, it also enjoyed the lowest positive rating at the time of any one country in any other country: 2% of Turks had positive feelings toward a country with which they’d maintained normal diplomatic relations for almost 2 generations. This was before IDF commandos embarked on an experiment to lower Israeli ratings to a value so close to absolute zero, that the record is likely to remain untouched for a long time.

    • Miura says:

      Correction: 41% of Americans had a positive view of Israel in March, ’07 (see PDF linked at BBC story for details).

  8. annie says:

    PIPA’s Foundation Sponsors (Program on International Policy Attitudes who conducted the US polling)

    Rockefeller Foundation
    Rockefeller Brothers Fund
    Tides Foundation
    Ford Foundation
    German Marshall Fund of the United States
    Compton Foundation
    Carnegie Corporation
    Benton Foundation
    Ben and Jerry’s Foundation
    Americans Talk Issues Foundation
    Circle Foundation

  9. lobewyper says:

    It couldn’t have been the Mavi Marmara–that would have affected many other countries as well, and the ratings of Israel by countries other than the US have stayed pretty much the same or improved very slightly. Nope, it had to be something (or some things) that affected only Americans. Could have been the internet. You can bet money that the Lobby has been running focus groups like crazy since these results were released…

    • annie says:

      its the kids lobewyper. that’s the only logical explanation. it’s the new generation.

      • seafoid says:

        It probably is, Annie. It’s a bit like the cocoa trees in Ivory Coast. They are all getting old and sick now, just like the lobby’s best people.

      • lobewyper says:

        Maybe, Annie, but could the younger generation alone explain such a large shift in only one year?

        • seafoid says:

          What about people figuring out the peace process is a joke after another year of Israeli footdragging?

        • annie says:

          i think it could. according to the US census 26% of the population is under 18. re Age: 2000 Issued October 2001 Census 2000 Brief

          scroll down to ‘Percent Change by Age: 1990 to 2000′ graph. in the year 2000 they recorded a 19.9 jump in that age group of 10-14 years which translates into the 21-25 age group today. this is the age most kids find politics (if they ever do). they represent 7% of our population. i think the trend in the age grouping 16-21 is non zionist too plus the strongest pro zionist grouping (older people) becoming smaller by the year. it is not that i don’t think the middle is shifting because i think it is and will continue to do so. i just think the biggest demographic that is pushing the change is coming from beneath, from the youth.

          it’s a 10% shift overall but if the youth coming into adulthood are coming in overwhelmingly non zionist it doesn’t portend well for israel because that grouping is not likely to shift over time.

          they know it too. my friend went to a meeting thursday night or the media and improving israel’s image and their number one focus group is the college age kids. this is their worry understandably. they are depending on this next generation and the support is just not there.

        • Scott says:

          It doesn’t help them that their biggest support among gentiles comes from evangelicals, –who, even if a big bloc, are outside of the mainstream of the most advanced culture.

        • piotr says:

          The beauty of evangelical support is that these people are totally oblivious to large majority of the media. As a result, Israel is marketed in the same time as The Biblical Country, and the paradise of gays and lesbians.

          Basically, the high opinion about Israel is in part based on the fact that this is the land of religious fanatics, and in part that this is a hedonistic paradise. Infidels and socially backward natives have to kept in check, of course. And of course we share values with Israel, like cheerful disregard for human rights.

          USA Today comments:

          1.
          By all accounts, Manning is being either mildly or heavily tortured. So much for Obama implying that wouldn’t happen again. My advice to anyone thinking of joining the military to take a good look at his treatment before joining. Manning may be a “traitor”, but in no one does that excuse our treatment of him.

          2.
          You’re right, they should have just shot him on the spot, like they used to do to traitors.

          I have no more sympathy for him, than I had for the terrorists at Abu Ghairb. This whiny baby hippy bullcrap is slowly killing our country.

          Now, if they took his eyes out with melon ballers and strapped him to the rack, before sending him to the Brazen Bull… you may have had a point.

          I would love to believe that comment 1 is the norm and comment 2 is an aberration. But how many people demand humane treatment of Bradley Manning?

          Although, the comments in USA Today were pretty balanced between the two types.

      • Taxi says:

        It’s also due to when Natanyahu said ‘F You & Your 2 Billion Incentive To Freeze Settlement Building For Three Months, Mr. Obama/Mr. Superpower/Mr. America!”.

        I think that raised a few eyebrows in America’s middle-aged and seasoned elders.

    • Todd says:

      “Nope, it had to be something (or some things) that affected only Americans”

      It’s not blogs, Goldstone or college. I would guess that people are tiring of Jewish influence, and the constant beating of the drums for Israel–it’s not like it’s been laid on thin! The average person isn’t as stupid as he’s given credit for being. Lots of people know of the USS Liberty, and many people who have served in the military have come in contact with our favored nation. The financial crisis hasn’t helped, either. Israel is a luxury we can no longer to pretend to afford.

    • fuster says:

      the Mavi Marmara, the settlements including Netanyahu’s refusal to go along with Obama’s urging to stop bsing and stop the expansion, Gaza, and a general distaste for Netanyahu and Lieberman are all in there working to erode that unquestioning support.

      If Hezbollah and/or Hams refrains from doing anything too repugnant for American tastes, support for Israel will continue to erode.

      • lysias says:

        If Hezbollah and/or Hams refrains from doing anything too repugnant for American tastes, support for Israel will continue to erode.

        I think both Hezbollah and Hamas have leaders clever enough to see that.

        Israel, not so much.

        • fuster says:

          Hamas and Hezbollah leaders might well be clever enough to avoid that.
          Sometimes, though, they have to deal with orders from their sponsor.
          Those guys have a different agenda.

        • annie says:

          speaking of their sponsor, israel has a different agenda for them too. no one forgets who instigated the rockets after november 4th, after the ceasefire had held.

        • “Sometimes, though, they have to deal with orders from their sponsor.
          Those guys have a different agenda.”

          If you think for one second that Hizbullah kakes orders from Iran than you know bugger all about Nasrallah! He’s clever enough to use Ahmadenejad to further his party’s interests rather than the other way around!

        • fuster says:

          who is the supreme religious authority for Hezbollah, theist?

          find out the answer to that question and you’ll learn a thing or two.

          Ahmadinejad counts for nothing in Lebanon and for not much in Iran. the money for Hezbollah doesn’t go through him.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Ah, yes, the “Cobra Commander” canard yet again.

        • Mooser says:

          “who is the supreme religious authority for Hezbollah, theist?”

          Hey, fuster, tell me, who is the supreme religious authourity for Israel? For Jews in general?

          Cause we all know that everybody, in every situation, unquestioningly carries out the will of their “supreme religious authourity”.

        • piotr says:

          Aparently, Khamenei is the marjah of Nasrallah, and one of the chief differences between Khamenei and marjahs like the late Fadlallah and Sistani is the temporal power of the supreme religious authority.

          So Khamenei clearly is in the position of command in this relationship. But the game here is much more subtle than neocon rhetoric about suicidal mullah suggests. I would argue that what Khamanei and Nasrallah are doing is much more rational then Israeli policy (low bar, I admit).

  10. Todd says:

    I don’t think many Christian Zionists believe that Israel is peace-loving, or that Palestinians weren’t violently thrown from their own lands, and Christian Zionists aren’t a large percentage of Christians in America. I don’t believe the percentage of non-Jews in America who would have voluntarily given money or fought for Israel was ever high, and was certainly never as high as the number of people who have expressed sympathy for Israel. My sympathy is with Israel’s enemies, but I wouldn’t fund or fight for them.

    The scam is bound to bust eventually. When America is being torn apart in almost every way, it doesn’t make sense for Americans to worry about Israel’s right to exist or coddle the Jewish community.

    “Japan’s positive rating of Israel is among the lowest. I wonder why.”

    Japanese extremist groups have supplied quite a few terrorists and fighters for Hizbullah and other groups fighting Israel. I guess the Japanese are just anti-Semites.

    • annie says:

      Japanese extremist groups have supplied quite a few terrorists and fighters for Hizbullah and other groups fighting Israel.

      source?

      I guess the Japanese are just anti-Semites.

      really? perhaps their msm is just not overwhelmingly zionist. maybe they aren’t fans of occupations.

      • Miura says:

        Perhaps some Japanese take exception to the founding ethos of Israel, as expressed by Theodor Herzl who wanted the Jewish state to be “part of the wall of civilization…against Asiatic barbarism.”

        • fuster says:

          perhaps the Japanese would do well to consider what their ethos was at the time Herzl said that, Miura.

        • lysias says:

          A lot of Japanese are probably reacting to that malodorous past of theirs, like so many Germans are now allergic to military adventures.

          I wonder what it will take to make us Americans learn that lesson. Do we have to go through a 1945 as well?

      • Chaos4700 says:

        I’m not sure but I think Todd was being sarcastic with both of those statements. As in, “expect the mainstream news to tack this way.”

      • Todd says:

        It’s common knowledge, just like the situation in Egypt. Look it up yourself. My source is conversations with UN troops serving in Lebanon.

        • Avi says:

          Todd March 7, 2011 at 5:15 pm

          It’s common knowledge, just like the situation in Egypt. Look it up yourself. My source is conversations with UN troops serving in Lebanon.

          Nonsense.

          In the 1970s and 1980s, revolutionary groups popped up all over the globe, from Latin America to China and Japan.

          Groups like ETA (Spain), the Japanese Red Army, the Baader Meinhof (Germany), the IRA (Ireland) and the Palestinian PFLP often collaborated with each other as their interests and ideologies sometimes overlapped.

          Thus, a few members of the Japanese Red Army helped Carlos the Jackal, for example. But, they weren’t anti-Semitic, nor did they supply “quite a few fighters” to Hizbollah as you allege.

        • Todd says:

          Nonsense? I guess it should read more than a few, rather than quite a few. Not much of a difference there, since I don’t claim to know the exact number of Japanese terrorists or fighters involved. Obviously, we arent talking hundreds or thousands of people, but Japanese terrorists and fighters were present, and they did make an impact.

      • fuster says:

        for annie,

        Lod Airport; Japanese terrorists working with PFLP.

        • tree says:

          Lod Airport

          39 years ago. (1972) By the Japanese Red Army, a very small ultra left communist group that advocated the overthrow of theJapanese government and the monarchy, along with the usual world revolution.

        • fuster says:

          tree, by definition, extremist groups are not vast.
          I’m not going to pretend to sorrow for their small number or lack of greater success or longevity.

          link to en.wikipedia.org

          annie asked for something and I tossed her the bone at hand. nothing more.

        • Koshiro says:

          Actually, since he specifically mentioned Hizbullah, the source is still missing.

          And of course, the thought that a fringe terrorist group with the aim of overthrowing Japanese society has anything to do with mainstream Japanese opinion is… to call it a stretch would be a stretch.

        • fuster says:

          since the JRA worked out of Lebanon, maybe he’s not quite right but had a vague idea.

        • tree says:

          tree, by definition, extremist groups are not vast.

          Duh, tell us something we don’t already know, oh great frog of self-professed wisdom. Do you really think we are all that dumb that we need you to point out the obvious?

          I’m not going to pretend to sorrow for their small number or lack of greater success or longevity.

          No one asked you to pretend sorrow or anything else, and its really silly, but typical, of you to imply that someone did. I suppose you think you’re not only smarter than everyone here, but you’re more moral, too?

          My point was exactly that the group was small and extremist and pretty much expired almost 40 years ago, thus not a logical or intelligent explanation for the current opinion of the majority of Japanese today with regards to Israel.

          What was it about my description of the Japanese Red Army that made you think I needed a link to the Wikipedia entry? It simply reaffirms everything I said in my earlier post.

        • SeaEtch says:

          “annie asked for something and I tossed her the bone at hand. nothing more.”

          Apart from being a rightist troll for Israel you’re a pompous ill-informed a-hole…with neither grace nor elemental courtesy.

          As for the ‘bone at hand’ stick it wherever you’ve a hole in your body.

        • fuster says:

          the link o, tree, was to detail their history and to point out the interesting fact (to me, at least) that they were founded in Lebanon.

      • seafoid says:

        The Japanese know about takeovers by arrogant foreigners who say their god is the only one.

        • fuster says:

          yeah, seafoid, but they’ve pretty much stopped attempting them of late.
          heck, they hardly even mention the semi-divinity of the Emperor any more.

      • Koshiro says:

        The following are just my personal impressions:

        Japanese people are skeptical of just about everybody when it comes to “influence in the world”. Consider that only 39% of the polled Japanese asserted a mostly positive influence even for their own country!

        Japanese people have no religious or cultural connection to Israel whatsoever, their economic relations are comparably unimportant, and generally speaking modern Japanese people do prefer for countries to mind their own business. It can also not be denied that there is no real taboo against antisemitism in Japan and that Japanese are not liable to support Israel out of a feeling of guilt or responsibility. (Although the antisemitic trash that is published in Japan is a fringe phenomenon generally considered to be on the level of wacky conspiracy theories such as UFOs and the like.)

    • Potsherd2 says:

      Long time ago.

  11. Todd says:

    “really? perhaps their msm is just not overwhelmingly zionist. maybe they aren’t fans of occupations.”

    That was sarcasm, grandma!

  12. hughsansom says:

    Which poll was it that found strong American support for Israel just a week ago or so? Pew?

    Methodology is key in these reports.

    More important, Israel alone among nations with markedly negative perception around the world enjoys a systematic misrepresentation of facts in favor of itself in the English-speaking world. In the US, there is nothing even remotely approaching honest mainstream reporting. So American perceptions of Israel must be considered with the understanding that the Times, CNN, NPR, etc., work diligently to protect Israel from the truth.

    • It was Gallup. And I would love to see how these two polls can be reconciled. It makes no sense to me. Someone please explain?

      • American says:

        Most polling groups like Gallup, Zogby and Pew, even though Pew is attached to a Trust Foundation get ‘paid” to do these polls—getting paid sometimes mean you get the results your client wants so you phrase the questions and poll areas to get the best results for them.

        The most respected poll in the world is the World Opinion Poll done by the Univ of Maryland and financed by the Kennedy Foundation…their world poll isn’t for “hire.”

        Last one showed 73% of Americans want the Us to be ‘Even handed’ in I/P.

        • I don’t think it’s fair or accurate to simply say that because someone is getting paid their work is automatically impartial. Can you explain who financed the poll and how that money affected the methodology/data collected and how this was not the case for the other poll? I was hoping for a substantive answer. On a side note, have you ever seen “Inside Islam: What A Billion Muslims Really Think”? It’s a beautiful piece by the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies.

      • Koshiro says:

        The Gallup poll usually asks the question “In the Middle East situation, are your sympathies more with Israel or with the Arab nations/the Palestinians?”
        So, that really doesn’t say anything about how positively Americans see Israel. It just says that that they have more sympathies for Israelis (not Israel!) than for Palestinians. It also doesn’t say how they feel about Israelis in general.

        The Gallup results are usually sold as ‘support for Israel’, which is not a reasonable conclusion, considering the actual poll question.

        • Potsherd2 says:

          But if they are tracking results over time, it’s important for the wording of the question to remain the same.

          Else, I suspect that “A plague on both their houses.” might win.

  13. peters says:

    The scam is bound to bust eventually.

    i wonder how it will be written in history books? i cannot imagine. been reading some memoirs of the debate , or lack of, about communism among intellectuals between the wars. it has taken 70 or 80 years to get perspective on that, and sort out the deluded from the smart.

  14. yourstruly says:

    How’s about a little more optimism, all ye who support justice for Palestine? Reasons to be positive include the revolutionary tide that’s engulfing the ME, this BBC poll that shows 41% of the U.S. public hold negative views of Israel, the slowly but steadily expanding BDS campaign and the fact that we’re on the right side of history. Is 2011 the year of the great turnabout?

  15. yourstruly says:

    this forthcoming election in egypt might turn out being the gold standard for true representative democracy

    the kind where there’s no call for representatives

    each person represents herself

    and what a turnout there’s going to be

    liberation square

    election night

    oh to be there

    • fuster says:

      this forthcoming election in egypt might turn out being the gold standard for true representative democracy—

      BASED UPON WHAT????????

      what planetoid did you descend from????

      there’s not a bit of evidence that anything in Egypt has really changed.

      there’s no evidence that the people of Egypt have won more than a battle to oust Mubarak.

      there’s barely a chance in a million that the next election will be much more than fairly free and fair.

      just adequate will be a big victory… gold standard is delusional.

      • I’m skeptical too. Gold standard indicates having produced something highly marketable, and we won’t know until about August whether or not that is occurring or achievable.

        The events in Egypt have been inspiring, but I’m too old, have been ripped off way too many times, to have more than faith that the Egyptian revolution will achieve democracy, let alone be something quite new in a radically positive way.

      • Sumud says:

        what planetoid did you descend from????

        there’s not a bit of evidence that anything in Egypt has really changed.

        there’s no evidence that the people of Egypt have won more than a battle to oust Mubarak.

        there’s barely a chance in a million that the next election will be much more than fairly free and fair.

        fuster – in the last few days Egyptians have ousted their interim PM and raided multiple Security Services (secret police) buildings. The new PM seems to have the confidence of the people, as does the army, for now. Egypt obviously has a long way to go before they could claim any gold standards, but to say “there’s no evidence that the people of Egypt have won more than a battle to oust Mubarak” is equally delusional. Yourstruly is at least speculating about the future, you seem to be having trouble grasping the here and now.

        Vive le France.

        • fuster says:

          Sumud, I’m also speculating about the future, but announcing that a place that hasn’t had free and fair elections is, on the next one suddenly going to be “the gold standard for true representative democracy” isn’t speculation at all, it’s drawing an X in the sand and declaring that there are diamonds.

          Vive le France indeed. What gold standard for representative democracy did the French Revolution produce?
          I remember shortly the guillotine and soon an Emperor.
          Democracy takes time and effort to change conditions on the ground, gold has to be dug for, most of the time.

          I wish the people of Egypt well, but follow yourstruly’s starry-eyed silliness and you’re setting up for disappointment when next your feet touch ground.

        • Sumud says:

          Sumud, I’m also speculating about the future,

          Not only. You also said, in the present tense:

          there’s not a bit of evidence that anything in Egypt has really changed.
          there’s no evidence that the people of Egypt have won more than a battle to oust Mubarak.

          …which is what I disagree with you about. My feet are firmly on the ground, thanks.

          Vive le France.

        • fuster says:

          Sumud, I’ll grant that the reform in Egypt has gone a bit further than Mubarak.
          But as far as I can see ( which is NOT far), the power is still in the hands of the military.
          Who is it that decides for the military what it is that they’ll do?

        • Avi says:

          fuster March 8, 2011 at 6:44 pm

          Who is it that decides for the military what it is that they’ll do?

          What is it what who?

          The military high command is made up of a council of several people. The military is not led by one single person. In addition, there have been several protests since Mubarak stepped down. Those protests targeted the military’s decisions on some interim issues — until such time as elections were held. Thus, the military has come to realize quite well that if they do not step aside and facilitate a democratic transition, they will have to answer to the people.

          There’s a good line in Hebrew that says: When god was handing out brains, you showed up with a fork to pick it up.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          You don’t seem to have a problem with the Israeli government being held in its vast majority by veterans of the IDF.

          Who is it that decides for Israel what Israel does? Especially where the white phosphorous meets the pavement.

        • annie says:

          There’s a good line in Hebrew that says: When god was handing out brains, you showed up with a fork to pick it up.

          !!! that’s funny.

        • Either US or the Russian Federation and I read that US gifts are more powerful. So the chief of the military is the leader now. A Republic accordibng to Plato who writes that the least healthy government is a democracy; the best is a philosopher king. Anybody disagree about the best?

      • Ellen says:

        “what planetoid did you descend from????”

        Fus, no need to insult, demean and ridicule any poster here. It is not discussion or debate. One completely discredits themselves with juvenile ridicule of others.

        • Sumud says:

          Fus, no need to insult, demean and ridicule any poster here.

          Ellen ~ I’ve noticed fuster does that, a lot.

        • fuster says:

          Dear Ellen, this is the fourth attempt at a reply to your comment……

          I will now admit that it’s all my fault!!!!! Yes, I alone say mean things. Everybody else on this blogs always engaged in civil, courteous discourse until I came and ruined everything……..

          The following list of perfectly civil comments from other commenters …….

        • Chaos4700 says:

          The fact that you were bounced FOUR TIMES goes to show just how atrocious you are. Get a clue, fuster.

      • Chaos4700 says:

        Oh, I get it.

        They’re Arabs, so obviously as far as you’re concerned, democracy is out of the question. I suppose this will make a great excuse when eee puts his boots on the ground in the Sinai, as far as you’re concerned, huh.

        • hophmi says:

          “They’re Arabs, so obviously as far as you’re concerned, democracy is out of the question. I suppose this will make a great excuse when eee puts his boots on the ground in the Sinai, as far as you’re concerned, huh.”

          Perhaps, Chaos, you can substantiate for us how Egypt’s democracy could be the “gold standard,” rather than resorting to calling all those who disagree with you “racist.”

        • Chaos4700 says:

          I love it how Egypt has to be a utopia, or otherwise it must become a brutal anti-Semitic hell.

          I guess this is just part of your ad campaign for fundraising.

        • fuster says:

          Chaos, are Egyptians all Arabs? I don’t know much about that stuff.

          Being a frog, to me humans all seem to have about the same capacities, anyway.

          Humans probably can all be educated and literacy rates in Egypt are fast improving. Literacy is climbing up and is close to 3/4s of the population.

          link to indexmundi.com

          That’s a good sign on the road to democracy and possibly a more equitable distribution of wealth.

        • Avi says:

          rather than resorting to calling all those who disagree with you “racist.”

          You seem to confuse disagreement with lying and idiocy.

          Ironically, over the course of the last few months, you have shown yourself to be a bigot on several occasions.

          Why is it when you and your sidekick the toad show up there’s this stench in the air?

          By the way, tell your sidekick that he sounds like a used car salesman.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Chaos, are Egyptians all Arabs?

          I love it how you need “massive slavering hordes of Arabs!” whenever we’re talking about the Nakba, and then when I point out how your racism propagates, you’re like, “They’re not all Arabs, silly!”

          This is your brain on Ziocaine. Any questions?

        • Avi says:

          fuster March 8, 2011 at 6:37 pm

          I don’t know much about that stuff.

          That’s the first honest thing you’ve said in the last 100 years.

  16. Sumud says:

    Just to be clear, the survey questions weren’t about whether you liked or disliked a country, it was do you think Country X has a positive or negative influence in the world. The methodology and questions are both covered in the BBC PDF that Phil has linked to above. Looking at the map of 27 countries sampled the Arab world is under-represented, as possibly is Africa.

    On Israel, the shift to a negative assessment of Israel’s role in the world is even more pronounced in countries outside the US [from the PDF]:

    On the other hand, several countries other than the US have become more negative in their views of Israel’s influence. Kenya, which leaned somewhat favourable in 2010, is now unfavourable in its opinion, with positive ratings down by ten points (29%) and negative ratings up by seven (41%). Negative perceptions grew sharper in the United Kingdom (66%, up 16 points), Canada (52%, up 14 points), Indonesia (68%, up 12 points), Australia (58%, up 11 points), Portugal (52%, up 6 points), and Spain (66%, up 6 points). Favourable ratings among Brazilians dropped eight points (13%).

    I’m happy to see that shift in Australian opinion. I think the stealing of Australian passports by Mossad and attack on the Free Gaza Flotilla will have been partly responsible, but also the educational aspects of BDS. The state chapter of the emerging third party, the Greens, recently adopted voted to adopt BDS s policy..

    There were also countries that saw an increase in positive assessment of Israel, including two of the five permanent members of the UN SC (China and Russia), although negative opinion of Israel grew in China by a similar amount. After the US (on 43%) Russia (on 35%) is the country which most believes Israel’s contribution to the world is positive, and of the 27 sample countries the one which is least critical of Israel at just 17%.

    I spent a little while calculating the amount of the population in each country that responded “depends/neutral/don’t know” to the question. In order [UN SC permanent members in bold*]:

    Philippines: 14%
    Turkey: 14%
    South Korea: 15%
    USA: 16%
    Indonesia: 17%
    Egypt: 17%
    United Kingdom: 18%
    China: 20%
    Germany: 20%
    Australia: 22%
    Spain 23%
    Canada: 25%
    France: 26%
    Italy: 27%
    Brazil: 28%
    Kenya: 30%
    Nigeria: 36%
    Chile: 37%
    Portugal: 38%
    Ghana: 41%
    Pakistan: 45%
    Mexico: 48%
    Russia: 48%
    Japan: 52%
    Peru: 53%
    South Africa: 55%
    India: 61%

    Next I took the graph from the BBC PDF and reordered it as per the list above, from country which had the lowest number of “neutral/don’t know” responses to the country w/ the highest number. I have two theories: first, that Israel is a country that polarises opinion, and that the bulk of those “neutral/don’t know” responses would fall into the “don’t know” rather than the “neutral” category. The second theory is that to know Israel, is to dislike Israel, or rather, to be aware that their influence in the world is negative. Check out the re-ordered graph (when it comes up click on the “Click here to start download..” link to get a 1 page PDF of the re-ordered graph I did):

    link to mediafire.com

    The trend is pretty clear: countries with the least number of “neutral/don’t know” responses (ie. those most informed about Israel) have the highest negative assessments of Israel. As the number of “don’t knows” increases, so the negative assessments go down. Logically, this is to be expected, the significance is: positive assessments stay reasonably constant regardless of the population being more or less informed, while negative assessments increase as the population becomes more informed.

    Any stats gurus around? Does that sound like a reasonable reading?

    *I highlighted the UN SC permanent members because they have veto power and I think, more than anything else, this is how Israel has managed to get away with it’s crimes since 1972 when Nixon started using the UN SC veto for Israel. The USA, UK, China and France all have a fairly high negative opinion of Israel, but not Russia. I’d be interested to know if Israel is romancing Russia as a backup should the US Gov decide to stop using the UN SC veto.

  17. zafarz says:

    Excellent analysis Sumud. I believe it is not Russia, it is China Israel is courting. This is a good thing since Russia has a religious orthodox base where Israel can continue to play the “God gave us this land’ card, China has absolutely no such baggage. Strategically this is not good for Israel.
    Sajepress

  18. hophmi says:

    High negatives correspond to media coverage more than anything else. Because spats between Obama and Netanyahu have been public, the negatives have gone up. It would be interesting to see the political breakdown of the negatives versus the political breakdown of the positives. My guess is that the extra ten percent are overwhelmingly liberal democrats.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Wonderful. This is going to mean that you and your ilk are going to indulge in yet another “commies!” witch hunt to bolster your agenda, huh.

    • Sumud says:

      High negatives correspond to media coverage more than anything else.

      You know this how?

      Because spats between Obama and Netanyahu have been public, the negatives have gone up.

      That doesn’t explain the shift in negativity in countries outside the US, again, from the linked PDF in the article:

      On the other hand, several countries other than the US have become more negative in their views of Israel’s influence. Kenya, which leaned somewhat favourable in 2010, is now unfavourable in its opinion, with positive ratings down by ten points (29%) and negative ratings up by seven (41%). Negative perceptions grew sharper in the United Kingdom (66%, up 16 points), Canada (52%, up 14 points), Indonesia (68%, up 12 points), Australia (58%, up 11 points), Portugal (52%, up 6 points), and Spain (66%, up 6 points). Favourable ratings among Brazilians dropped eight points (13%).

  19. hophmi says:

    “Wonderful. This is going to mean that you and your ilk are going to indulge in yet another “commies!” witch hunt to bolster your agenda, huh.”

    No, just making an observation. The President is a Democrat. Those who are supporters of the President will take less kindly to people who have public spats with him.

  20. yourstruly says:

    alive and well

    the spirit of those eighteen days of unlimited potential in liberation square

    with it

    the heretofore impossible?

    no problema!

  21. I just saw JAFFA ORANGES last night. It clarified how zionists taught US how zionists, anti-labor kibbutzniks —and their media created the idea that Arabs didn’t have the productivity–greening of the desert. Kibbutzniks were anti-=labor cause they had been taught that in Russia. Just like China don’t put up with ‘labor’ now.
    Anybody seen the cable show? where can I get a copy.