A new study shows that “support for Israel” among Jewish US college students have dropped by 27 percent since 2010.
According to a study released at the “Herzliya Conference” by “Brand Israel Group,” support from Jewish US college students for Israel has dropped by 27 percent since 2010. This comes as the US has publically grown to develop a rocky relationship with Israel over the past few years, with particular issues between the former US president, Barack Obama, and Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s Prime Minister.
The research showed that 84 percent of Jewish university students in the US supported Israel’s side in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in 2010. The study had found that even Jewish students who were unaffiliated with Israel showed strong support. However, in 2016, this dropped to 57 percent, many saying that they think Israel has fallen short in terms of human rights, diversity and tolerance. It also showed that since 2010, more students claimed knowledge of the conflict- about 14 percent more.
The study also shows that Jewish students’ support for Palestinians increased from just 2 percent to 13 percent during the same time period. Researchers have also found that 36 percent of students from any demographic said they witnessed anti-Israeli activity, and 77 percent said that the topic “either rarely or never comes up”.
The 2016 study sampled over 2,600 US students from several demographic groups as well as students from the Jewish community.
The research also noted that 62 percent of Jewish students said they saw anti-Israeli activity on campus, and 31 percent said they had experienced anti-Semitism, half of which believed it was linked to the recent anti-Israeli attitudes that have spurred up.
As an overall, the study says that Israel seems to have strong support fromolder Americans and from the Right, but could potentially be losing support from Jewish college students as well as other minority groups.
Comments On the Study
The researchers said in the report: “We need to reach out to at-risk groups who largely don’t care about the details of the conflict and we need to address their concerns about the decency and morality of the Israeli in general and in the context of the conflict.”
“At-risk segments represent the future of America and American Jewry.”
They also said: “Current communications approaches are not stemming the negative trends.” researchers wrote. “They generally focus on ‘the conflict or beyond the conflict’ and set up the wrong paradigm. Neither approach targets the people we need to reach with the message that will overcome their issues with Israel/Israelis.”