Jewish Americans Stand on Isreal and Palestin Conflict Essay

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The aim of this study was to explore among a sample of Jewish Americans the prevalence of beliefs associated with intractable conflict and to test the role of different beliefs in predicting individuals’ support for a compromise solution to the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. We found that the Jewish Americans we sampled tended to agree with a sense of collective victimhood and the Jewish Israeli narrative on the conflict. On the other hand they tended to disagree with the Palestinian narrative on the conflict and with statements that dehumanized the Palestinians and on average did not frame the conflict in terms of a zero-sum game. Jewish Americans in our sample tended to fall in the middle in terms of their endorsement of compromise…show more content…
It also appears that when controlling for variance explained by demographic variables and attachment to Israel, education level emerges as a predictor for rejection of peaceful solutions. Individuals who are more educated were more likely to refuse concessions to the Palestinians. This finding can per- haps be explained by the influence of millions of dollars invested in engaging Jewish college students with Israeli culture and the Israeli view of the conflict; thus spending more time informal education leads to more refusal to compromise with the Palestinians (Beinart, 2010, 2012). The central focus of this study was the question of which belief suggested by theorists best predicts individuals’ support for or rejection of peaceful solutions to the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. Our findings are in line with previous research from Israel that suggests that dehumanization and a zero-sum view on the conflict serve an important role in predicting individuals’ support for the perpetuation of conflict (Halperin et al., 2008; Halperin & Bar-Tal, 2011; Hammack et al., 2011; Maoz & Eidelson, 2007; Maoz & McCauley, 2005, 2008). Importantly, our study contributes an additional novel predictor to the current literature based on our operationalization of a monolithic narrative on the conflict. The monolithic narrative variable, which is based on the level of acceptance of the Jewish narrative on the conflict (i.e., “we intend to live in peace but we must continually defend
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