VIDEO – The majority of Israeli Jews support the Women of the Wall
group, according to the latest monthly Peace Index poll released by the Israel
Democracy Institute (IDI) and Tel Aviv University following recent altercations at the Western Wall and legal rulings
on the limits of public prayer there.
Israelis were surveyed on their attitudes towards the Women of the Wall’s quest to pray out loud and wear a prayer shawl and tefillin (phylacteries) at the holy site.
Questioned about their overall attitude, 48% of Israeli Jews back the Women of the Wall, while 38% do not.
Support for the Women of the Wall is highest among self-defined secular Israeli Jews (64%) and the traditional-non-religious (53%). Traditional-religious (26%), religious (28%), and ultra-Orthodox (0%) support them to a lesser degree.
Zionist rabbis vs. Women of Wall / Kobi Nachshoni
Religious Zionism leaders join battle against liberal female worshippers following court ruling allowing them to wear prayer shawl at Western Wall
The backing differs dramatically based on background: Support for the Women of the Wall is highest among Israelis born in America or Europe (77%), followed by Israelis whose parents were born in America or Europe (61%), Israelis whose parents were born in Israel (46%), Israeli whose parents were born in Asia or Africa (43%), Israelis from the former Soviet Union (38%), and Israeli who were born in Asia or Africa (33%).
A higher percentage of Israeli Jewish men (52%) back the Women of the Wall than women (46%).
A larger proportion of those with academic degrees (57%) support the Women of the Wall than those with some post-high school education (41%), a high school degree (40%), and those with less education (41%).
When later told that the Jerusalem District Court had ruled that the Women of the Wall were not violating the “local custom” and were not breaking the law, support for Women of the Wall grew to 56%, while 34% maintained their opposition.
Support for Women of the Wall increased among all sub-groups, except for those with less than a high school education.
The survey, conducted April 28-30, included 600 respondents who constitute a representative sample of the adult population of Israel. The measurement error for a sample of this size is 4.5%.