Poll: Where do PA Arabs See Themselves in the Mideast Turmoil?

Results show PA Arabs prefer Fayyad, are pessimistic about their situation, but don't see a youth revolution in the making.

Maayana Miskin, | updated: 00:07

PA revolution? (illustrative)
PA revolution? (illustrative)
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Palestinian Authority Arabs are pessimistic regarding their situation, and most would support a non-violent way to reunite Fatah and Hamas and form a state. However, when asked if they expect a youth revolution in the West Bank similar to those that occurred in Tunisia and Egypt, only 22.8% said yes,31.3% said no, with the rest undecided, and  27.2% explained that they felt that Palestinian conditions are different from those in the Arab countries.

Researchers questioned 1,360 PA adults, 860 of them from Judea and Samaria and the remaining 500 from Gaza. The poll was conducted on February 24-26.

The majority of respondents were pessimistic regarding the future, with 54.1% expressing concern regarding the state of the PA economy and 61.8% saying they fear for their lives, their family and their property under the PA..

Of those surveyed, 80.1% said they support the protest movement in the Arab world that has seen leaders toppled in Tunisia and Egypt, and regimes threatened in Libya and Bahrain.

Still, despite uncertainty about their future and support for Mideast protests,, they do not embrace the idea of turning their own lives upside down.  Close to 75% said they would support a non-violent popular movement among Arabs in Judea, Samaria and Gaza aimed at getting their government to bring an end to the Fatah-Hamas schism, a move that would unite actively anti-Israel and terrorist Hamas with Fatah. 

On the other hand, more than 76% said they would support a popular uprising aimed at forcing Israelis to leave Judea and Samaria, but in this case non-violence was not mentioned. The question of non-violence is irrelevant, since attempted violence against Jews is ongoing.

Peace was also a non-issue. Only 19.6% expressed support for peace talks, while 77.6% said the PA should continue to refuse to speak to Israel unless Israel forbids Jews to build homes east of the 1949 armistice line.

Even the 19.6% who remained in favor of talks were not all optimistic: just 18% said they believe an end to the Israel-PA conflict is possible at this time.

Despite the strong support for unifying Hamas and Fatah, 56.5% said they prefer PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, the current second in command to Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, running their lives, to Hamas' Gaza head, Ismael Haniyeh. Just 19.2% said Haniyeh would be preferable to Fayyad.