Tiargan-Orr, Roni, and Meytal Eran-Jona. “The Israeli Public’s Perception of the IDF Stability and Change.” Armed Forces & Society (early view; online first)
This article attempts to shed light on Israel’s civil–military relations by employing the public’s trust in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) as a key parameter. The study is based on a series of public opinion polls conducted between 2001 and 2010, during periods of military confrontation as well as periods of relative quiet. The findings show that despite increased criticism toward the IDF and claims by researchers, the Jewish-Israeli public’s trust in the IDF generally remains very high and stable and strengthens significantly when the cannons start to roar. We also found a fixed pattern of change in public opinion during low-intensity conflicts. In a comparative perspective, the findings suggest that the “rally ’round the flag” effect is relevant in the Israeli case both in conventional war and in limited conflicts. Moreover, the findings indicate that the public’s trust in the army is not a uniform perception but a complex one that may have different and sometimes conflicting facets.