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New Poll Shows Negative Views and More

World Opinion of the United States

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World Opinion of the United States
April 24, 2007

A new poll says world opinion of the United States is bad and growing worse, but that isn't the end of the story.

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs and WorldPublicOpinion.org surveyed people in 15 countries (including the United States) and found that people around the world reject the idea that "as the sole remaining superpower, the US should continue to be the preeminent world leader in solving international problems." Even Americans agree.

But in 13 of the countries, poll respondents also rejected the idea that the United States "should withdraw from most efforts to solve international problems." Instead, they prefer to see a United States "(doing) its share in efforts to solve international problems together with other countries."

In other words, the world does not want us to take our ball and go home. They just don't want us to be the boss all the time.

Other highlights of the poll on world opinion of the United States:

  • Majorities in 13 out of 15 publics polled say the United States is "playing the role of world policeman more than it should be."
  • On the question "How much do you trust the United States to act responsibly in the world?," 84% of Argentineans answered "not at all" or "not very much." Peru (80%), Russia (73%), France (72%), and a majority in 10 of the 15 countries also expressed high degrees of mistrust regarding the United States.
  • Out of 12 countries asked, 6 think the United States should maintain or even increase its number of military bases around the world. Five wanted reductions. One was evenly divided.
  • The poll covered China , India, the United States, Indonesia, Russia, France, Thailand, Ukraine, Poland, Iran, Mexico, South Korea, the Philippines, Australia, Argentina, Peru, Israel, Armenia, and the Palestinian territories.
  • The publics polled represent about 56 percent of the world’s population.
Full survey results and analysis are available here.
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