CNN Poll: Majority of Americans side with Israel in Gaza fighting
July 21st, 2014
05:01 PM ET
7 years ago

CNN Poll: Majority of Americans side with Israel in Gaza fighting

Washington (CNN) - A majority of Americans say Israel's military actions in Gaza are justified, with only four in 10 saying that Israel has used too much force, according to a new national poll.

But a CNN/ORC International survey conducted Friday through Sunday also indicates that favorable opinions of Israel have edged down since earlier this year.

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The poll was released Monday, as the death toll in the current conflict soared.

Death toll mounts as U.S. pushes for cease-fire

Monday Palestinians officials reported more killed, bringing the death toll to around 550. It's unknown how many were militants, but the United Nations has estimated that 70% are civilians. Israel announced Monday that seven more of its soldiers were killed, bringing to 25 the number of Israeli soldiers who have died. Two Israeli civilians have also been killed.

According to the poll, 57% of the public said the Israeli actions against Hamas, the Palestinian organization that runs Gaza, are justified, with just over a third saying they are unjustified.

Forty-three percent of those questioned said Israel's using about the right amount of force, with 12% saying they're not using enough. Nearly four in 10 said Israel is using too much force in Gaza.

"Attitudes toward Israeli military action have been extremely stable over the years," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "In 2012, an identical 57% thought that Israel's actions against Hamas in Gaza were justified. And in 2009, the number of Americans who felt that way was only a few points higher, at 63%."

"Support for U.S. military aid to Israel also remains fairly stable, with almost two-thirds of Americans saying that U.S. assistance to Israel should be increased or kept the same," Holland added.

The survey indicates that 38% have an unfavorable opinion of Israel, up 14 percentage points from February. Sixty percent said they have a favorable opinion of Israel, down from 72% in February. But that 60% favorable rating is three times higher than the 20% of Americans who have a positive view of the Palestinian Authority, the governing body that runs the West Bank.

If the bloodshed continues for a while, don't be surprised if some partisan bickering over the fighting in Gaza breaks out in the United States as the poll suggests a partisan divide.

Forty-five percent of Democrats questioned said that Israeli's military actions in Gaza are justified. That number jumps to 56% among independents and 73% among Republicans.

Photos: Israel's ground offensive in Gaza

The poll was conducted for CNN by ORC International from July 18-20, with 1,012 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: CNN/ORC International poll • CNN/ORC poll • Gaza
soundoff (273 Responses)
  1. Elaine Fidel

    If too much force then why didn't Hamas accept a cease fire

    July 21, 2014 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  2. ray

    netenyahoooooooooooo the morn should be in prison.

    July 21, 2014 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  3. Snaffew

    Israel has state of the art weaponry and they are trying to destroy the Palestinians Nazi Hitler style. A bigger group of hypocrites than Israeli people I cannot imagine. I think both sides are crazy to be fighting over a dust bowl that is littered with the debris of warfare. The Israeli people claim to believe the Palestinians are just in receiving their own state, but their actions loudly speak otherwise. Religious wars are can easily make an argument about the US invading Iraq and Afghanistan as a religious war. The gov't claims it as counter-terrorism, and the truth is to create a stable puppet regime to ensure the steady flow of oil. Afghanistan harbors major pipelines running through its' borders. Israel was created as a state in 1947 and was largely brought forth with the aid of Truman and the US gov't. I truly wonder how independent these polls that are referred to in the article really are. It seems the Jewish-Americans opinions are heavily weighted in these polls even though Jewish Americans represent only 2 percent of the American population. Oy Vey!

    July 21, 2014 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  4. Jake

    More non-Jews by % in Israel than Non-Christians by % in America. 13x more Arabs in Israel by % than Jews in America.

    July 21, 2014 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  5. Queensladyday

    Shame on Israel! No one...and I mean no one I know supports the obvious genocide taking place in Gaza. This is a truly manipulated news cycle!

    July 21, 2014 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    New England Journal of Medicine report:

    ""Taking all existing coverage expansions together, we estimate that 20 million Americans have gained coverage as of May 1 under the ACA," the authors wrote. "We do not know yet exactly how many of these people were previously uninsured, but it seems certain that many were."

    They reached the 20 million total this way: 1 million adults under age 26 enrolled in their parents' plan; 8 million enrolled in private coverage through the insurance marketplaces; 5 million enrolled in private coverage directly through their insurer; 6 million enrolled in Medicaid."

    And yes, very high percentages were uninsured beforehand...that's already been shown previously with the prior reports on enrollment breakdowns.

    $10K says CNN is going to avoid reporting on this like the plague....well, at least until they're forced to by word getting which case they'll wait until the story can be all about whatever idiocy the GOP/Teatroll mouthbreathers are feeding their base to convince them not to believe any facts anyone provides them about it. After all, 20 million insured under the ACA is not a news story...but the GOP/Teatrolls' demagoguery sure is "newsworthy."


    July 21, 2014 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  7. john

    count me in with the column that they are not using enough force which normal county would tolerate what Israel is tolerating we in the united states after 5 rockets would blanked bomb Gaza.

    July 21, 2014 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  8. Snaffew

    28 Israeli's have been killed by Palestinian rocket attacks...The numbers of Palestinians killed by Israeli military operations since 2000 far exceeds 10,000. On average for the conflict between Israelis and Israeli fatality for every 25 Palestinian fatalities. Please Israel supporters, don't act like innocent victims. It takes two to tango, and you win Dance Fever every time you step out there. Both sides are wrong, but Palestine has far and away been more of the victim than the attacker.

    July 21, 2014 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  9. Brent

    Hamas: Shoots uncountable rockets into Israel, rejects cease fire
    Israel: Warning, warning, warning, warning, ok, we aren't warning you anymore. Sounds pretty Justified to a person with common sense.

    July 21, 2014 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  10. Sniffit

    "CNN poll: Favorable views of Russia drop following Malaysian airliner crash"

    "CNN Poll: Majority of Americans side with Israel in Gaza fighting"
    On today's episode of The World Is Full of Sh-theads:

    Russian involvement in shooting down Malaysian jet carrying almost 300 innocent, mostly white civilians: THUMBS DOWN!

    Israel blowing up schools and apartment buildings, etc., and killing more Palestinian civilians than died in the Malaysia plan: THUMBS UP!

    July 21, 2014 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  11. thorny issue

    Shilling intensifies. The media measures how well it's propaganda is working. If the media told the truth and showed the dead kids etc... The numbers would be different. Even the poll questions... "hamas" ??? what? Israel versus what the media always say is "terrorist hamas".

    LOL, some Israeli "journalist" on CNN called them "hamas islamic jihad" about 20 times in a few minutes. It sounded really strange.

    The real shocker... Even with the severe amount of pro-Israel propaganda, (count rockets) a large amount of people are not buying it. When new people see that it was actually propaganda, they are shocked.

    July 21, 2014 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  12. A

    must be a lot of racists who justify killing innocent civilians

    July 21, 2014 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  13. mark

    The Muslim world is so preoccupied with Israel while over 200 innocent people are killed by Muslim terrorist on a daily basis around the world.

    July 21, 2014 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    These polls are so rigged that's worth about two dead flies.

    July 21, 2014 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  15. mark

    Muslims are the biggest hypocrites they are coming out to protest Israel's actions in Gaza while ignoring the genocide that's taking place in the name of Islam around the word and in every Muslim country in the middle east.

    July 21, 2014 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  16. Elaine Fidel

    Why don't the gazans go to the tunnels for shelter. Hamas built the tunnels with the money and materials they were given for construction.the tunnels should be their bomb shelters

    July 21, 2014 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  17. SG

    There is no need for debate. Simply read the Hamas Charter and recognize that it not only calls for the destruction of Israel but for death to all Jews, who are seen as the cause of all evil in the world. This is a true call for genocide, as opposed to the labels of genocide that genocidal Hamas supporters plaster on everything Israeli.

    July 21, 2014 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  18. Sandoval

    Israel has shown amazing restraint. It is beyond unfortunate that Hamas continues to hide behind civilians.

    July 21, 2014 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  19. Jerr

    Well there is a big flippin surprise the way the media is slanted in this country.

    July 21, 2014 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  20. Thomas

    Hamas needs to stop firing rockets into Israel , and The Israelis need to stop building settlements on non jewish land .

    July 21, 2014 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  21. John

    The survey was done by in in the sample size is only old people who's views haven't changed in 50 years. Learn how to do a survey CNN.

    July 21, 2014 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  22. don in albuquerque

    When Israel decides it wants peace, there will be peace. Not before. Hope they decide it soon before they infuriate the entire Arab world. Could be we will wake up one fine morning and find Israel is a dim memory.

    July 21, 2014 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  23. Judy

    Of course 57% of American side with the Israelis because the US media never tells them the truth. That this is not a war between two nations, but a bombardment of people who are occupied and besieged by a brutal and occupying force that is the State of Israel. Shame on this world for letting this genocide happen!

    July 21, 2014 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  24. Lisa P


    Food for thought: Why does Israel send even an iota of food, electricity, medical supplies, cement etc into Gaza if they wish to commit genocide against the population in Gaza? Would it not be more efficient just to block everything?
    July 21, 2014 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm

    That would be too obvious. They can get away with so much more by flinging around a bunch of wild accusations and then starting a "war" against people who are trapped in place like fish in a barrel. That sort of scenario plays very well with the people whose support they need in order to commit these outrageous atrocities on a captive population - just look at the poll results if you're wondering how well the Israeli propaganda mission is succeeding.

    July 21, 2014 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  25. Ol' Yeller

    Like Bill Maher said, Israel gets the high percentage of support from America because the Jews must stay in control of Israel in order for 'you know who' to come back.
    I wish I could be around when ALL religions were abandoned for what they are and the World as a whole could finally move forward... but this ain't going to happen for a looong time (though the Internet has sure speeded up the process... of this and a lot of things- so much for the plan to keep the masses uneducated- now they just have to wage the misinformation war).

    July 21, 2014 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
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