McCain vs. Obama: What Do Israelis Think?

Who cares what they think? It’s a US election! But if you do care, indications are that the same sort of generational/ideological split that is happening in the US vis-a-vis the Presidential elections is reflected in Israelis’ preferences as well. Older Israelis seem to prefer McCain as do those that tend to be hawkish. Younger Israelis, perhaps influenced by Obama’s hip hop inflected YouTube music videos prefer the Senator from Illinois. But as this photo clearly demonstrates – the streets have spoken and the presumption here is that despite McCain’s recent post convention surge, Barack Obama is going to be the next President of the United States. Why? Because Shooky, the owner of Mifgash Obama, a felafel and shwarma joint near the beach and Hayarkon street in Tel Aviv just spent all kinds of shekels putting up a sign on his restaurant, that’s why. In Israel there is no Mifgash John Kerry. There is no Misa’dat Al Gore. There is no Rechov Walter Mondale. If we honor an American politician by naming something for him, it’s because he’s the boss. The President. Not a failed Presidential candidate. Well, at least Shooky hopes so.

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  1. david

    9/8/2008 at 4:27 pm

    I hear very strong opinions against Obama from American Olim. But everyone seems to think that in comparison to the current administration, almost any outcome of the election would be an improvement.
    I personally will be very glad when Condoleeza Rice will not come anymore as an envoy from the white house. Apart from blocking the Tel Aviv – Jerusalem highway she has definetly overstayed her welcome with too many utterly clueless remarks.

  2. avi

    9/8/2008 at 4:30 pm

    American olim are not the average Israeli. American olim are far more hawkish (as a whole, particularly recent olim) than the general Jewish and Israeli population.

    And, except for Condi Rice blocking up traffic, particularly near my house, I welcome her visits as diplomacy and soft power are in Israel’s strategic interests and the reason why I pray (and will vote) for an Obama administration.

  3. Yael

    9/8/2008 at 4:34 pm

    Avi, what do you mean by “hawkish”?

  4. david

    9/8/2008 at 5:19 pm

    Well, I wouldn’t call those whom I had in mind ‘hawkish’. More adventurous perhaps, more widely travelled, often with a hate-love-relationship with leftist ideals, especially here in Israel. Would this qulify as ‘hawkish’? I certainly know more kibbutznikim who always vote for meretz and are more hawkish then these olim.

    And how can Rice’s cluelessness about the situation be in Israel’s interest? Plans that she presented here in Israel that looked as if they were drawn up in the white house at three in the morning are devoid of anything practical and reasonable. The involvement in the Arab-Israeli conflict of the current and soon to be gone US administration was a political failure and sometimes there were some outright hostile moves that I can’t explain from my limited knowledge about what is going on in the US.

  5. Adam

    9/8/2008 at 10:48 pm

    Think before you vote for McCain it was recently discovered that Sarah Palins church had a speaker that BLATANTLY stated that the reason Israel is under attack is because they have not accepted Jesus. This came from a “Jews for Jesus” guest speaker at the wasilla church….Youtube it

  6. Alex

    9/8/2008 at 11:35 pm

    Yes, a guest speaker, as opposed to Obama’s regular anti-Semitic preacher, friends, and associates. If you’re still “thinking” Obama, it’s simply called denial.

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  8. Tom Morrissey

    9/9/2008 at 11:18 am

    There’s no question that Palin is a raving anti-semite.

  9. צדיק

    9/12/2008 at 8:02 pm

    אובמה וחמ(א)ס יד ביד.

    עוזר למחבלים, אובמה קושי מנוול

  10. themiddle

    9/13/2008 at 9:08 am

    Fuck off with your bigotry, #9.

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