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Pew Poll: Large majority of Americans oppose getting more involved in Syria

A new Pew poll finds that by 70-20 percent, the U.S. public opposes the U.S. getting more involved in the Syrian civil war by supplying arms to the rebels.

This is the third time in the past year and a half that Pew has polled on that question and, interestingly, although the change is small, the opposition has grown higher every time notwithstanding significant efforts, led by Sens. John McCain (R-AZ)  and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), to make the case in favor aiding the rebels. In March of 2012, it was 63-29 against getting more involved.

In the new poll, by 68-27, respondents agreed with the statement that the U.S. was already too committed to other situations around the world to get drawn into a new one, and by 60-25 the public expressed concern that the Syrian opposition groups may not be any better than the existing government.

The opposition was one of those rare moments of bipartisan agreement among the general public. Republicans opposed the idea of arming the rebels by 71-20 and Democrats agree by 66-25. Independents were the most opposed of all, at 74-18.

Comments (9)

  1. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 06/17/2013 - 03:54 pm.

    After ten years of splashing our hand in the blood of the middle east–what do we have show for it?

    Bloody hands.

    And, like a bucket of water–damn little permanent change.

    The ability to dismiss that would require a very special type of idiocy.

  2. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/17/2013 - 05:02 pm.

    Almost certainly

    this will guarantee that we -will- get involved.

  3. Submitted by Dan Landherr on 06/18/2013 - 09:00 am.

    Watch the media carefully

    This is typically the time when consent is manufactured. They’ve already gone to the “chemical weapons” boogeyman.

  4. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 06/18/2013 - 12:51 pm.

    On the day that NATO turns over security to Afghanistan, we have finally had a “breakthrough” for talks with the Taliban. This was achieved by:


    The US has agreed that a formal rejection of al-Qaida by the Taliban leadership would now be a “negotiating aim” rather than a precondition for talks. It will also seek a commitment from the Taliban to end its insurgency in Afghanistan and recognise women’s rights in the country.

    (end quote)

    We certainly showed them, didn’t we !!

    On to Syria !!

  5. Submitted by Dennis Tester on 06/19/2013 - 09:03 am.

    And this despite

    virtually every press report, including this one, failing to mention that the Syrian “opposition groups,” like Al-Nusra, are closely aligned with Al-Qaeda. If the pollsters had mentioned that the Obama administration wants to arm Al-Qaeda-aligned jihadists, the opposition would be even greater.

  6. Submitted by Peder DeFor on 06/19/2013 - 12:34 pm.

    Open Question

    It seems that there is general agreement that Obama wouldn’t have supported such a move back in 2007-08 while he was a candidate, right? So what happened? Did he change his mind because of things that he learned while in office? Or has he become a captive of the system? Or is it because he trusts outcomes more while he is in charge?
    I’d ask the same questions of the NSA revelations, too.

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/19/2013 - 08:46 pm.

      You could try

      all of the above.
      In the real world, there’s usually more than one reason for an action.

      • Submitted by Peder DeFor on 06/20/2013 - 10:59 am.

        Um, thanks?

        Paul, this is not really a helpful answer. I’m trying to figure out if we’re at a point where the machinery of state is simply going to do what it wants or if we simply need a better President. (And yes, of course, in real life this isn’t simply a binary choice either. But honestly, can’t you see the value in trying to determine *why* things have gone the way they have?)

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