Poll: Most Israelis are Zionists, but see moral decay

Wednesday, May 09, 2007 |  by Staff Writer  

The results of a public opinion poll released on Tuesday show that the vast majority of Israeli Jews view themselves as Zionists, but see a steady and worrying decay in the moral fiber of their nation. Sixty-nine percent of the 500 respondents said they are Zionist to a "great" or "very great" extent, reported The Jerusalem Post. Seventy percent said they want to see schools invest more time and effort in teaching Zionist values to their children. An even great number of respondents, 80 percent, said Israel should continue to identify itself as "the Jewish state," rather than a "state of all its citizens." But while most Israeli Jews feel a deep connection to their country and its core Bible-based values, they fear that their leadership has been hopelessly infected with corruption and is guiding the nation down a path of moral turpitude. A 58 percent majority of those polled said the corruption now rampant in the Israeli government (no fewer than five ministers and former ministers, including Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, are currently under investigation) can no longer be stopped. A mere 10 percent expressed any kind of faith in current anti-corruption efforts by the state comptroller and attorney general. More concerning is the fact that 75 percent of Israelis, according to the poll, believe their nation is morally worse today than it was five years ago. Thirty-eight percent expect that trend to continue. The poll was conducted by the Smith Institute on behalf of the Israeli branch of the World Zionist Organization, which will host the Fourth Zionist Congress in Jerusalem later this month.

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