By Elizabeth Mendes, Gallup.com
The large majority of Americans continue to view Israel favorably, while far fewer say they view the Palestinian Authority or Iran very or mostly favorably.
These data are from Gallup's annual World Affairs survey, conducted each February since 2001. The Feb. 2-5, 2012, survey asked Americans to rate a list of more than 20 countries. Iran ranked at the very bottom, the Palestinian Authority was several spots higher up, and Israel was much closer to the top of the list.
President Obama is to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Monday at the White House, where the two leaders will likely focus most of their discussion on their nations' respective stances toward Iran. Obama made strong statements on the issue in an interview this week with The Atlantic magazine, telling the publication that the United States "has Israel's back." Both leaders are scheduled to address the upcoming American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference in Washington D.C., which will also be highly focused on Iran. The three leading Republican presidential candidates are also set to speak at the pro-Israel lobbying organization's annual gathering - each seeking to position himself as best equipped to support Israel.
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