New poll: tepid support here for active US peace role, skepticism about Arab Spring

An interesting poll in today’s edition of The Hill.

On Israel, some 27 percent of voters surveyed by the Capitol Hill newspaper said this country is “too supportive of the Jewish state,” with 31 percent saying U.S. policy is not supportive enough – and 31 percent saying it’s just “about right.”

While Jewish peace groups say Washington should be more active in brokering peace agreements between Israel and its neighbors, only 24 percent of voters agree, with about half opposing more involvement.

With his 2012 reelection campaign already in high gear, that suggests there isn’t much political incentive for any big U.S. initiatives in the region.

While President Obama sees the unrest sweeping the Arab world as an opportunity as well as a challenge, a majority of Americans just see it as a problem.

According to the poll “[s]ixty-one percent of likely voters believe the democratic uprisings in the Arab world that President Obama embraced in a major speech Thursday will make things more difficult for the United States.”

Only 20 percent say the shifting political tides in that part of the world will help the United States.

A plurality – 42 percent – said the U.S. should “embrace regimes that support democracy, even if the outcome is unsure,” and 35 percent said Washington should “prioritize its national interests and embrace undemocratic regimes that back American policy.”

Where have you gone, Hosni Mubarak? A nation turns its lonely eyes to you.

About the Author
Douglas M. Bloomfield is a syndicated columnist, Washington lobbyist and consultant. He spent nine years as the legislative director and chief lobbyist for AIPAC.