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What Palestinians Really Think of Hamas

The World Affairs Council of New Hampshire, a non-partisan nonprofit, recorded this interview with Michael Robbins Ph.D., Director and Co-Principal Investigator at Arab Barometer in an effort to share insights into how Palestinians really feel about Hamas. This is a part of the World Affairs Council of New Hampshire's efforts to contextualize the ongoing crisis in Israel and Palestine. Arab Barometer has been working since 2006 to collect survey data from people living across the Middle East and North Africa since 2006 by conducting face-to-face interviews in people's homes, providing the most accurate database of community attitudes in many of these countries. They completed their latest round of interviews in Gaza and the West Bank on October 6th, 2023, just one day before Hamas' attack on civilians. This data provides a unique insight into the feelings expressed by 499 Palestinians living in Gaza on the eve of this crisis. Since the attack, realities have shifted dramatically, meaning that perceptions may have shifted along with the developing crisis. This discussion provides data driven insights into what Palestinians were thinking and how they related to the leadership of Hamas in Gaza. It is an important data point for anyone trying to understand the conflict and the potential ramifications for the prospects for peace in the region. 

Please note: This conversation starts with an extensive overview of how Arab Barometer works to collect this data. If you would like to skip the discussion of the methodology of their work, skip ahead to the 5:47 minute mark.

This interview was recorded on Tuesday, October 31, 2023.

More Information

You can read Dr. Jamal and Dr. Robbin's Article on their findings as reported in Foreign Affairs Magazine HERE.

Key Findings from their recent survey:

About Our Speaker

Michael Robbins is the director and co-principal investigator of Arab Barometer. He has been a part of the research network since its inception and serving as director since 2014. He has led or overseen more than 100 surveys in international contexts and is a leading expert in survey methods on ensuring data quality. His work on Arab public opinion, political Islam and political parties has been published in Comparative Political Studies, the Journal of Conflict Resolution, the Journal of Democracy and Foreign Affairs. He received the American Political Science Association Aaron Wildavsky Award for the Best Dissertation in the field of Religion and Politics.

Arab Barometer is a nonpartisan research network that provides insight into the social, political, and economic attitudes and values of ordinary citizens across the Arab world. We have been conducting high quality and reliable public opinion surveys in the Middle East and North Africa since 2006. We are the longest-standing and the largest repository of publicly available data on the views of men and women in the MENA region. Our findings give a voice to the needs and concerns of Arab publics.

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