Threat perceptions and feelings as predictors of Jewish-Israeli support for compromise with Palestinians

Ifat Maoz*, Clark McCauley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


A representative sample of Israeli Jews (N = 504) completed a survey assessing attitudes towards compromise in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Support for compromise was well predicted (R = .63) by a combination of four scales: perception of collective threat from Palestinians, perception of zero-sum relations between Palestinians and Israelis, personal fear of Palestinians, and sympathy towards Palestinians. Feelings of hostility towards Palestinians did not make an independent contribution to this prediction. As hypothesized, respondents who perceived high collective threat and zero-sum relations were much less supportive of making concessions to Palestinians. However, respondents who indicated feeling personal fear were in regression analysis slightly more supportive of compromise. Sympathy toward Palestinians was associated with more support for compromise. Additionally, religiosity was strongly associated with decreased support for compromise. However, entering threat perceptions and sympathy into the equation substantially reduced the predictive value of religiosity, indicating that psychological mechanisms underlie, at least in part, the tendency of more religious respondents to show less support for making concessions to Palestinians.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)525-539
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Peace Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2009


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