The United States’ 44th president is losing the affection of Israelis, a recent poll shows. The 2015 Spring Pew Global Attitudes Survey, released Tuesday, revealed that fewer than half of the Israelis surveyed have confidence in the leadership of Barack Obama.
Confidence among Israelis in Obama’s leadership dropped from 71 percent in 2014 to just 49 percent this year, with half disapproving of his performance in the international arena. Among Likud supporters, that number was only 40 percent.
The survey questioned 1,000 people across the country in April and May, measuring attitudes towards Obama amid increasing tensions between the US president and the Jewish State. The poll also found 80 percent disapproved of Obama’s policies on Iran and the handling of nuclear negotiations.
Previous surveys had shown a rising trend in Obama’s approval rating among Israelis, with 49 percent in 2011, 61 percent in 2013, and 71 percent in 2014. By comparison, 58 percent of Americans today approve of their president’s work on the global stage.
The antipathy towards Obama does not seem to have soured Israelis to the US in general, however. The same survey showed 81 percent of Israelis see the US in a favorable light, though there was a marked discrepancy between Jews (87 percent) and Arabs (48 percent). Even that number shows a drop from the previous year, though, when 84 percent viewed America favorably.
Israelis also like the US a lot more than their neighbors do, with most Jordanians (83 percent), Palestinians (70 percent), Turks (58 percent) and Lebanese (58 percent) giving the US the thumbs-down. 82 percent of Palestinians also show no confidence in Obama’s foreign policy.
Additionally, while 55 percent of Israelis believe Obama has mishandled the advance of the Islamic State (ISIS), 84 percent approve of US strikes against the terror group.
60 percent of Israelis polled were Jews and 40 percent were Arabs. The poll was conducted by face-to-face interviews in Hebrew and Arabic, and the results were weighted to reflect ethnic and religious distributions. The results have a 4.3 percent margin of error.