Peace Index: Majority of Israeli public believes Netanyahu wants control over media

According to data from the Peace Index’s monthly poll which was published today, a majority of the Israeli public believes that through legislative changes that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is leading, he is attempting to deepen his control over the media and is not trying to change it to be more balanced. A significant majority believes even more so that the government has no right interfering with public broadcasting content.
Who understands the corporation crisis? Photo Credit: Miriam Alster/Flash90

Israeli politicians’ claims that a majority of the Israeli public does not understand the significance regarding the Israeli Broadcasting Corporation controversy have been reinforced by Tel Aviv University and the Israel Democracy Institute’s monthly Peace Index, which was published this morning (Tuesday). 53% of the Jewish public and 60% of the Arab public answered “no” when asked if they understood what the controversy was regarding the Israeli Broadcasting Corporation between those in support of establishing it and those against it.

The monthly poll also asked respondents about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s motives to introduce changes within the media. In this case, a majority of 61% of the Jewish public and 84.5% of the Arab public believe that “the desire to strengthen his political control over the Israeli media” is what motivated Netanyahu’s actions.

Among the Jewish public, a majority who associate themselves as center-left on the political spectrum believe in this idea, whereas only half of those who consider themselves to be right-wing believe this. However, only 28.5% among the Jewish public and 15.5% among the Arab public believe that “the desire to make the media in Israel more balanced and of better quality” is what motivated Netanyahu.

When the respondents were asked if the government has the right to interfere with public broadcasting content even if the government is funding it, a majority (60% within the Jewish public and 69% in the Arab public) answered “no.”

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