Aug. 28, 2014

As New Dangers Loom, More Think the U.S. Does ‘Too Little’ to Solve World Problems

Survey Report A large majority of Americans think the world is a more dangerous place than it was several years ago. And a terrorist group that was not even on the public’s radar a year ago – the Islamic militants known as ISIS or ISIL – today ranks near the top of its list of […]

Jun. 9, 2014

Public Has Doubts about Bergdahl Prisoner Exchange

Survey Report The prisoner exchange that freed U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl from the Taliban in Afghanistan gets a more negative than positive reaction from the public. Overall, 43% say it was the wrong thing for the Obama administration to exchange five Taliban prisoners for captive soldier Bergdahl, while fewer (34%) say it was the right […]

Mar. 25, 2014

Concerns about Russia Rise, But Just a Quarter Call Moscow an Adversary

Survey Report In the wake of Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region, public concern about Russia has increased, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Even so, when given the choice, more describe Russia as a serious problem but not an adversary (43%) than say it represents an adversary (26%). Just 22% say Russia […]

Mar. 11, 2014

Most Say U.S. Should ‘Not Get Too Involved’ in Ukraine Situation

Survey Report As Russian troops remain in Ukraine’s Crimea region and Crimea’s Parliament has set up a secession vote, Americans prefer the U.S. to not get too involved in the situation. By a roughly two-to-one margin (56% vs. 29%), the public says it is more important for the U.S. to not get involved in the […]

Dec. 9, 2013

Limited Support for Iran Nuclear Agreement

Survey Report The public is reacting skeptically to last month’s multilateral agreement aimed at freezing parts of Iran’s nuclear program. Overall, more disapprove than approve of the deal, and there continues to be broad skepticism about whether Iranian leaders are serious about addressing international concerns over the country’s nuclear program. The latest national survey by […]

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Dec. 3, 2013

Video: Americans Grow More Pessimistic about U.S. Role in World Affairs

Highlights from the report: Public Sees U.S. Power Declining as Support for Global Engagement Slips. For the first time in nearly a half century of polling – a majority agrees that the United States should mind its own business internationally.

Dec. 3, 2013

Public Sees U.S. Power Declining as Support for Global Engagement Slips

Growing numbers of Americans believe that U.S. global power and prestige are in decline. And support for U.S. global engagement, already near a historic low, has fallen further. The public thinks that the nation does too much to solve world problems, and increasing percentages want the U.S. to “mind its own business internationally” and […]

Sep. 16, 2013

Public Backs Diplomatic Approach in Syria, But Distrusts Syria and Russia

As U.S. and Russian diplomats reached an agreement over the weekend to dismantle Syria’s chemical weapons stockpiles, the public expresses support for a diplomatic approach to the crisis but is skeptical about its effectiveness. By a 67% to 23% margin, the public approves of Barack Obama’s decision to delay military airstrikes and pursue a […]

Sep. 9, 2013

Opposition to Syrian Airstrikes Surges

Over just the past week, the share of Americans who oppose U.S. airstrikes in Syria has surged 15 points, from 48% to 63%, as many who were undecided about the issue have turned against military action. By contrast, the share of Americans who support airstrikes remains virtually unchanged: Just 28% favor U.S. military airstrikes […]

Sep. 3, 2013

Public Opinion Runs Against Syrian Airstrikes

President Obama faces an uphill battle in making the case for U.S. military action in Syria. By a 48% to 29% margin, more Americans oppose than support conducting military airstrikes against Syria in response to reports that the Syrian government used chemical weapons. The new national survey by the Pew Research Center, conducted Aug. […]

Aug. 19, 2013

Public Backs Cutoff of Military Aid to Egypt

With violence continuing to rage in Egypt, 51% of Americans say it is better for the United States to cut off military aid to Egypt to put pressure on the government. This is nearly double the percentage (26%) saying it is better to continue military aid to the government in order to maintain influence […]

Jul. 17, 2013

Fewer See Events in Egypt as Critical to U.S. Interests

Public interest in news from Egypt has plummeted since the early weeks of the Arab Spring in February 2011. And the share of Americans saying what happens in Egypt is “very important” to U.S. interests has fallen by 10 points – from 46% to 36% – since then. The survey by the Pew Research […]

Jun. 17, 2013

Public Remains Opposed to Arming Syrian Rebels

Broad majorities continue to oppose the U.S. and its allies sending arms and military supplies to anti-government groups in Syria. Last Thursday’s announcement that the U.S. would aid the rebels has not increased public support for action, and majorities of all partisan groups are opposed. Overall, 70% oppose the U.S. and its allies sending […]

May. 13, 2013

Benghazi Investigation Does Not Reignite Broad Public Interest

The public paid limited attention to last week’s congressional hearings on Benghazi. Fewer than half (44%) of Americans say they are following the hearings very or fairly closely, virtually unchanged from late January when Hillary Clinton testified. Last October, 61% said they were following the early stages of the investigation at least fairly closely. […]

Apr. 29, 2013

Modest Support for Military Force if Syria Used Chemical Weapons

By a 45% to 31% margin, more Americans favor than oppose the U.S. and its allies taking military action against Syria, if it is confirmed that Syria used chemical weapons against anti-government groups. Public interest in the Syrian conflict remains low, and nearly a quarter of Americans (23%) have no opinion about the use […]

Mar. 19, 2013

Public Remains Supportive of Israel, Wary of Iran

As Barack Obama arrives in the Middle East this week, the sympathies of the American public remain firmly with Israel in its dispute with the Palestinians. And when it comes to Iran, the public continues to say it is more important to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons than to avoid a military conflict. […]

Feb. 11, 2013

Continued Support for U.S. Drone Strikes

While U.S. drone strikes have faced new scrutiny in recent weeks, a majority of the public continues to support the program. Overall, 56% approve of the U.S. conducting missile strikes from pilotless aircraft to target extremists in countries such as Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia; just 26% say they disapprove. Opinion is largely unchanged from […]

Jan. 24, 2013

Deficit Reduction Rises on Public’s Agenda for Obama’s Second Term

When Barack Obama took office four years ago, reducing the budget deficit was a middle-tier item on the public’s agenda. Only about half of Americans (53%) viewed it as a top policy priority in January 2009, placing it ninth on a list of 20 policy goals. But as Obama begins his second term, only […]

Jan. 8, 2013

As Hagel Fight Begins, Wide Partisan Differences in Support for Israel

For decades, the public has sympathized more with Israel than the Palestinians in the Middle East conflict. However, the partisan gap in sympathies, while little changed in recent years, is as large as it has been in more than three decades of polling. Discussion of the U.S.-Israeli relationship is likely to come to the fore […]

Dec. 14, 2012

Public Says U.S. Does Not Have Responsibility to Act in Syria

As fighting in Syria rages on between government forces and anti-government groups, the public continues to say that the U.S. does not have a responsibility to do something about the fighting there. And there continues to be substantial opposition to sending arms to anti-government forces in Syria. The latest national survey by the Pew […]