Poll shows public reprobation of war

TEL AVIV, Israel, Aug. 16 (UPI) -- Amid divisions over the feasibility and outcome of Israel's offensive on Hezbollah, an opinion poll indicated public dissatisfaction with the war's handling.

In the poll carried Wednesday by daily Yediot Ahronot, 70 percent of the public said they think Israel should not have agreed to a cease-fire without the return of the two soldiers kidnapped by Hezbollah, in contrast with the 27 percent who believe that accepting the cease-fire was the correct decision.


The survey, which illustrated the public's criticism of its leadership and their desire to assign accountability for the failures of the war, showed that 69 percent believe in the need to create an official national inquiry committee regarding the handling of the war by the government and military. Only 28 percent do not think such a committee is necessary.

More than half of those surveyed (57 percent) think that Defense Minister Amir Peretz needs to resign; 41 percent called for Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's resignation and 42 percent wanted to dismiss Chief of General Staff Dan Halutz.

The poll indicated that 30 percent of Israelis agree with Olmert that Israel won the war, while the same number labeled Hezbollah the winner. However, more than a third of those surveyed, 36 percent, believe that no one won the war.


The paper did not indicate the number of people surveyed, nor did it provide a margin of error.

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