Paul Harris
The Guardian
October 30, 2011

The latest deaths of 13 Americans in Afghanistan in an apparent suicide bomb attack in Kabul comes at a moment when the US public’s attitude to the long war is at an all-time low.

A poll late last week, by CNN and ORC International, revealed that only 34% of Americans now support the war, one percentage point down on the previous all-time low. It found that 63% of Americans are now opposed to the war. The deaths of yet more Americans in a conflict that has already cost the lives of more than 1,700 American soldiers is only likely to see support fall further. Indeed the poll showed that some 58% of Americans say that the conflict is now similar to the Vietnam war.

The war is now a serious problem in Obama’s strategy for the 2012 election. For a president who already faces discontent over accusations from the left of the Democratic party that he is too close to the Republicans, the Afghan war represents another area where he is out of step with many on his own side. The same poll showed that some six in ten Republicans still supporting the war, compared to just a quarter of Democrats.

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