CBNNews.com - JERUSALEM, Israel - In a poll conducted in six Arab countries, Hezbollah spiritual leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah was voted most admired, followed by Syrian President Bashar Assad and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
The Saban Center at Washington, D.C.'s Brookings Center surveyed some 4,000 Arabs in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Morocco, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.
Nearly 100 percent of Lebanese Shit'ite respondents said Israel was weaker than it appeared and its defeat was only a matter of time -- up from 59 percent two years ago.
Professor Rafi Israeli of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem wasn't surprised by the poll's findings.
"It turns out that the most murderous and barbaric leaders are also the champions of the Arab world," he said, pointing out that a 2001 survey conducted after the September 11 attack placed Osama Bin Laden as the Arab world's most admired leader.
"In our dealings with the Shi'ite world, including Iran, both the West and Israel have been acting in a state of dhimmitude," the professor said.
Dhimmitude is defined by Islamic history scholar Bat Ye'or, author of Islam and Dhimmitude: Where Civilizations Collide, as the comprehensive Muslim legal system to rule the non-Muslim world by jihad ("holy" war).
"Muslims, and especially Shi'ites, take this as a sign of weakness and submissiveness," Professor Israeli said.