February 6, 2024 | Flash Brief

Majority of Israelis Oppose Palestinian Statehood Due to Security Threats

February 6, 2024 | Flash Brief

Majority of Israelis Oppose Palestinian Statehood Due to Security Threats

Latest Developments

The majority of Israelis oppose the creation of a Palestinian state, even as part of a U.S.-brokered deal that would forge formal relations with Saudi Arabia, a poll published on February 6 found. The poll suggests that Israelis fear the near-term security threats that a state would pose in light of the October 7 terrorist attack.

Respondents in the Israel Democracy Institute survey were asked: “Do you support or oppose the notion that as part of a deal to end the war—which will include long-term military quiet, guarantees from the United States, and an agreement with Arab states such as Saudi Arabia—Israel should agree to the establishment of a Palestinian state?” 51 percent were opposed, 36 percent were in support, and 13 percent were undecided.

Western and Arab powers have resurrected the idea of a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians as an exit strategy from the Gaza war. Jerusalem has ruled out Palestinian statehood, or even interim involvement in post-war Gaza by the Palestinian Authority (PA) unless the PA undergoes extensive reforms.

Expert Analysis

“While foreign powers are pushing the idea of a Palestinian state, the majority of Israelis who would have to live next to such a state find the idea dangerous. The horrors of October 7 must not be repaid with a gift of sovereignty that will only generate more October 7s. It’s time for new thinking as opposed to the failed paradigms of territorial withdrawal and compromise, which have only brought more Iran-backed terrorism to Israeli communities.” — Mark Dubowitz, FDD CEO

“If elections were held today, Hamas would sweep the West Bank. The massacres of October 7 and their popularity among Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza are a stark reminder to Israel of the perils of ceding territory to terrorist organizations. Most Israelis reject the idea of a Palestinian statehood — not because they oppose the idea of Palestinian self-determination, but simply because Israelis would not feel safe with a Palestinian state on their border.” — Enia Krivine, Senior Director of FDD’s Israel Program and National Security Network

“Israelis understand there are a myriad of issues that must be addressed first before they will accept the establishment of a Palestinian state. Israel is unwilling to accept either Hamas as a ruling power over Palestinians or a Palestinian Authority — in its current form — that has proven ineffective at governing the West Bank, let alone a Palestinian state. Moreover, Iran-backed terrorist groups pose a significant security challenge in the West Bank and must be addressed before Palestinian statehood is considered.” — Joe Truzman, Senior Research Analyst at FDD’s Long War Journal

Israeli Goals in War

With Hamas holding out in pockets of Gaza against the Israeli offensive and stymieing efforts by Qatar and Egypt to mediate another hostage release, respondents were asked which of the Israeli government’s two war goals they believed should take precedence. 50.6 percent said, “bringing the hostages home,” and 36.4 percent said, “toppling Hamas.”

A small majority of Israelis, 54.7 percent, believe the country is insufficiently safeguarding their security at this time, and 71 percent want a snap election or an election to be held at the end of the war rather than in 2026 as scheduled, the IDI poll found.

The US Should Not Tie Israel-Saudi Normalization to a Palestinian State,” by Enia Krivine

Blinken Ties Saudi-Israel Normalization to Palestinian Statehood,” FDD Flash Brief

Abbas Calls for UN Recognition of Palestinian State,” FDD Flash Brief


Israel Israel at War Palestinian Politics