Israeli reporter Zvi Yechezkeli went undercover with a hidden camera into Judea and Samaria to see what Palestinian Authority Arabs really think about Israeli plans for annexation. And he received some surprising answers.
Yechezkeli’s conversations revealed a large chasm between what Palestinian Authority leaders say and what residents really feel. As he explained, “the understanding that this is an opportunity for a different life extracts from the gut things once heard only behind closed doors, very quietly.”
One Arab woman speaking to the reporter by phone estimated that in her village, about 80 percent of people would prefer Israeli citizenship and 20 percent want it but would not say so publicly, according to the report posted on Channel 13 earlier this month. The Kohelet Policy Forum posted the video with an English translation on YouTube on Tuesday.
Another man noted that many Palestinian Authority Arabs support getting Israeli identification papers. “That’s what everyone thinks. Believe me, ask a child. Even he will tell you, even if he doesn’t work in the settlements, he prefers to get Israeli citizenship as a child and then he won’t be restricted at the checkpoints or anywhere.”
Speaking to a man leaning on his car, Yechezkeli asked him, “Do you prefer living under Israeli sovereignty or the P.A.?”
He answered, “No, Israel, really. The soldier’s military boots are preferable to Abu Mazen [P.A. head Mahmoud Abbas] on my head.”
Another Arab man on the street said, “The Palestinians are a nation of idiots. Come on! The Israelis are a million times more compassionate than the P.A.”
“You mean it’s better if Israel’s responsible for the whole area,” asked Yechezkeli.
Answered the man: “A million times better.”