August 25, 2013
A new Reuters/Ipsos poll finds:
Americans strongly oppose U.S. intervention in Syria’s civil war and believe Washington should stay out of the conflict even if reports that Syria’s government used deadly chemicals to attack civilians are confirmed….
About 60 percent of Americans surveyed said the United States should not intervene in Syria’s civil war, while just 9 percent thought President Barack Obama should act.
[Only] 25 percent of Americans would support U.S. intervention if Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces used chemicals to attack civilians, while 46 percent would oppose it.
The polls suggest that so far, the growing crisis in Syria, and the emotionally wrenching pictures from an alleged chemical attack in a Damascus suburb this week, may actually be hardening many Americans’ resolve not to get involved in another conflict in the Middle East.
The results – and Reuters/Ipsos polling on the use-of-chemicals question since early June – suggest that if Obama decides to undertake military action against Assad’s regime, he will do so in the face of steady opposition from an American public wary after more than a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In this week’s Reuters/Ipsos survey of 1,448 people, just 27 percent said they supported his decision to send arms to some Syrian rebels; 47 percent were opposed.
The most popular option among Americans: not intervening in Syria at all. That option is backed by 37 percent of Americans, according to the poll.
In other words, Americans might finally be souring on the whole idea of “humanitarian war”.
Given the substantial doubt among experts regarding the claims that the Syrian government used chemical weapons on its own people, and the desire of the American people to stay out of another war even if Syria did use such weapons, the U.S. government’s saber rattling appears to be further alienating a population already skeptical due to the NSA spying scandal and Iraq war.