Although 49 percent of the Israeli public believes that Israel must wait and see whether American policy succeeds regarding Iran, 74 percent of the public does not believe that the policy of dialogue will succeed, according to a new poll conducted by the Center for Iranian Studies at Tel Aviv University on the evening its two-day research conference this week.

According to the poll, the Israeli public is divided on the question of whether Israel should attack or not. The poll says Israelis of 42 years of age and over are significantly more concerned about the Iranian bomb than their younger counterparts.

Eighty-nine percent of those 42 and over are concerned, compared with 61 percent of the young people.

There is a similar gap between the age groups regarding possible emigration from Israel if Iran should develop a nuclear bomb (89 percent and 64 percent, respectively, will consider emigrating). The secular population of the Israeli much more concerned than the religious population: 88 percent of the secular population is worried, while 67 percent of the religious population is concerned.

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In all, that has to do with possible Israeli policy in response to the Iranian threat, 61 percent of Israeli men support an attack, as compared with 47 percent of the women.

Professor David Menashri, the head of the center, said: “The unbridled language of President Ahmadinejad and his threats to wipe Israel off the map of history, accompanied by a program to develop nuclear capability and the upgrading of ballistic missiles, together with Iran’s increasing involvement in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip – all these have created real concern among Israelis. In addition, it appears that the declarations of Israeli leaders that regard Iran as an ‘existential threat,’ which were meant to make Israel’s concern clear to the world, only raised the threshold of fear among the Israeli public.”

David Bedein can be reached at


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David Bedein
David Bedein is an MSW community organizer and an investigative journalist.   In 1987, Bedein established the Israel Resource News Agency at Beit Agron to accompany foreign journalists in their coverage of Israel, to balance the media lobbies established by the PLO and their allies.   Mr. Bedein has reported for news outlets such as CNN Radio, Makor Rishon, Philadelphia Inquirer, Los Angeles Times, BBC and The Jerusalem Post, For four years, Mr. Bedein acted as the Middle East correspondent for The Philadelphia Bulletin, writing 1,062 articles until the newspaper ceased operation in 2010. Bedein has covered breaking Middle East negotiations in Oslo, Ottawa, Shepherdstown, The Wye Plantation, Annapolis, Geneva, Nicosia, Washington, D.C., London, Bonn, and Vienna. Bedein has overseen investigative studies of the Palestinian Authority, the Expulsion Process from Gush Katif and Samaria, The Peres Center for Peace, Peace Now, The International Center for Economic Cooperation of Yossi Beilin, the ISM, Adalah, and the New Israel Fund.   Since 2005, Bedein has also served as Director of the Center for Near East Policy Research.   A focus of the center's investigations is The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). In that context, Bedein authored Roadblock to Peace: How the UN Perpetuates the Arab-Israeli Conflict - UNRWA Policies Reconsidered, which caps Bedein's 28 years of investigations of UNRWA. The Center for Near East Policy Research has been instrumental in reaching elected officials, decision makers and journalists, commissioning studies, reports, news stories and films. In 2009, the center began decided to produce short movies, in addition to monographs, to film every aspect of UNRWA education in a clear and cogent fashion.   The center has so far produced seven short documentary pieces n UNRWA which have received international acclaim and recognition, showing how which UNRWA promotes anti-Semitism and incitement to violence in their education'   In sum, Bedein has pioneered The UNRWA Reform Initiative, a strategy which calls for donor nations to insist on reasonable reforms of UNRWA. Bedein and his team of experts provide timely briefings to members to legislative bodies world wide, bringing the results of his investigations to donor nations, while demanding reforms based on transparency, refugee resettlement and the demand that terrorists be removed from the UNRWA schools and UNRWA payroll.   Bedein's work can be found at: and A new site,, will be launched very soon.