Who hasn't heard about Israelis' behavior abroad? Rioting
in one place, vandalism
at a tourist site in another place. There appears to be no shortage of stories about the "ugly Israeli's" conduct in foreign countries.
Ahead of the high travel season expected in August, the Israeli Goodwill Ambassadors association conducted a survey with the help of the TNS Teleseker institute among a representative sample of 503 Israeli respondents aged 18 to 65, who were asked about the behavior of Israelis traveling abroad.
According to the survey's findings, 51% of Israelis who have ever traveled abroad have encountered Israeli conduct which embarrassed them. More women than men reported feeling ashamed by such behavior (55% compared to 47%). This percentage rises among younger age groups.
Ugly Israeli strikes in Germany. Graffiti on Berlin Wall (Photo: Ziv Reinstein)
A similar percentage of the public who traveled abroad (52%) believes that such behavior causes damage to the State of Israel's
image (20.6% "very much agree" with this stand and 31% "somewhat agree" with it).
In addition, there is an overwhelming consent among the entire public that good behavior abroad will positively affect the State of Israel's image.
A total of 91% of respondents agree with this stand (59.8% "very much agree" with it, and 31.2% "somewhat agree"). Women agree with this stand more than men (65% compared to 45%), and people over the age of 30 agree with it more than younger age groups.
A large majority of the public accepts the approach that when an Israeli travels abroad, he or she "represents the State." About 71% of the public (and 73.4% of those who have ever traveled abroad) agreed with the saying: "When I'm abroad I feel I am representing the State."
About 51% of respondents agreed that when Israelis travel abroad they cause damage to the State in their behavior (21.6% "very much agree" with this stand and 29.5 "somewhat agree" with it).
Good behavior abroad will positively affect Israel's image (Photo: Shutterstock)
According to Lior Rotbard, a member of the Israeli Goodwill Ambassadors association, "Every citizen traveling abroad represents the State and affects its image in the eyes of the world.
"The opinion of people abroad about Israel is determined by prejudice and what they see on television screens, but is just as much based on their personal acquaintance with our country's good or bad 'ambassadors.'
"The behavior of each and every one of us, the good manners and respect for our surroundings, for symbols, property and local residents, are what make us better and more successful ambassadors for the State of Israel. Representing the State respectfully is a pleasant mission."