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War on Iran? Most American, Israeli Citizens Oppose

64% of Israelis favor a nuclear-free zone

- Common Dreams staff

Despite the steady drumbeat for war coming from US and Israeli neoconservatives, polls show that the people of both the United States and Israel are against a US or Israeli military attack on Iran.

An Iranian demonstrator holds a poster to support Iran's nuclear activities as he waits for arrival of delegates of International Atomic Energy Organization, IAEA at Imam Khomeini airport in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, Jan. 29, 2012. A U.N. nuclear team arrived in Tehran early Sunday for a mission expected to focus on Iran's alleged attempt to develop nuclear weapons. The delegation includes two senior weapons experts, Jacques Baute of France and Neville Whiting of South Africa, suggesting that Iran may be prepared to address some issues related to the allegations. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi) A new United Technologies/National Journal poll shows only 17% of the US public supports military action against Iran and a November PIPA (Program on International Policy Attitudes) poll shows that only 43% of Israeli Jews support a military strike on Iran.

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Think Progress reports today:

Only Seventeen Percent Of US Public Supports Military Action Against Iran

While some of the more hawkish rhetoric and efforts to drive forward on unilateral sanctions continue to come out of Congress, the new United Technologies/National Journal “Congressional Connection Poll,” found that public support for a military strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities is extremely low.

Forty-seven percent of respondents favored economic sanctions against Iran, only 13 percent said the U.S. should “go farther and take covert action against Iran such as sabotage and assassination of scientists working on their nuclear program,” and 17 percent would support “tak[ing] military action against Iran, including bombing weapons facilities inside the country.”

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Shibley Telhami and Steven Kull writing in the New York Times:

Most important, when asked whether it would be better for both Israel and Iran to have the bomb, or for neither to have it, 65 percent of Israeli Jews said neither. And a remarkable 64 percent favored the idea of a nuclear-free zone, even when it was explained that this would mean Israel giving up its nuclear weapons.Despite all the talk of an “existential threat,” less than half of Israelis support a strike on Iran. According to our November poll (.pdf), carried out in cooperation with the Dahaf Institute in Israel, only 43 percent of Israeli Jews support a military strike on Iran — even though 90 percent of them think that Iran will eventually acquire nuclear weapons.

Most important, when asked whether it would be better for both Israel and Iran to have the bomb, or for neither to have it, 65 percent of Israeli Jews said neither. And a remarkable 64 percent favored the idea of a nuclear-free zone, even when it was explained that this would mean Israel giving up its nuclear weapons.

The Israeli public also seems willing to move away from a secretive nuclear policy toward greater openness about Israel’s nuclear facilities. Sixty percent of respondents favored “a system of full international inspections” of all nuclear facilities, including Israel’s and Iran’s, as a step toward regional disarmament.

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