Europe 1 // Photo credit: SAID KHATIB / AFP 20:01 p.m., December 06, 2023, modified at 20:03 p.m., December 06, 2023An Ifop poll for the Representative Council of Jewish Institutions of France (CRIF) provides insights into the position of the French around the conflict between Israel and Hamas. Thus, despite a strong response from the IDF in the Gaza Strip, public opinion is evolving only marginally in France.
While the war between Israel and Hamas is still raging in the Gaza Strip, the French position on the conflict seems to be freezing. In any case, this is what a survey by Ifop reveals for the Representative Council of Jewish Institutions of France (CRIF). The IDF's strong response to the Gaza Strip in response to the terrorist movement's bloody attack on Israeli territory on October 7 has only marginally changed the perception of French public opinion.
Also, 90% of those surveyed believe that the acts perpetrated by Hamas constitute crimes against humanity or terrorist acts. This figure is slightly lower than last October (92%). More than 6 out of 10 French people consider that the objective of eliminating Hamas, claimed by the Israeli army, is justified.
The French, not in favor of the continuation of the pro-Palestinian demonstrations
Moreover, a majority of respondents (72%) are not in favour of the continuation of pro-Palestinian demonstrations in France. This figure represents an increase of three points compared to last October. A rally took place last Saturday in the streets of the capital.
The outbreak of this conflict also caused a significant increase in acts hostile to the Jewish community on French soil. On November 14, Gérald Darmanin indicated on Europe 1 that more than 1,500 anti-Semitic acts and remarks had been recorded since October 7 and revealed a figure three times higher than that counted over the whole of 2022. In this regard, according to the poll, 71% of the French consider that this is a threat aimed not only at the Jews of France, but also at society as a whole.
If the majority of the French population subscribes to all these positions, the sympathizers of France Insoumise, young people as well as people characterized as "Other religion" (all non-Catholics and atheists) appear out of step. Thus, while 10% of French people perceived Hamas' terrorist attacks as an act of resistance, this figure rises to 22% among 18-24 year olds and 23% among LFI supporters.
Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the politician whose reactions annoy the most
Some political leaders, through their reactions to the conflict, also arouse the annoyance of the French. In the first place, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, former LFI candidate in the presidential election (19%) and Manuel Bompard, national coordinator of the movement (18%) appear. Moreover, the rejection of the founder of LFI is in the majority among left-wing sympathisers (60%). Jean-Luc Mélenchon recently sparked an outcry after criticizing journalist Ruth Elkrief. "If we don't insult Muslims, this fanatic will be outraged," he wrote on X (formerly Twitter). Gérald Darmanin then demanded that the journalist be placed under police protection.
Finally, former Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin also provoked the discontent of 63% of the French. On the set of Quotidien, he declared: "We can see in the background how much the financial domination over the media and the world of art and music weighs heavily. They can't say what they think simply because contracts stop immediately. It is clear that the financial rule that is imposed today in the United States in cultural life weighs heavily. Unfortunately, we also see it in France." "Anti-Semitism, which has been masked for so long, is unleashed, thinking it is intimidating," Jacques Attali, François Mitterrand's former adviser, told X.