Three-fourth of Americans reject US war on Syria

Three-fourth of Americans reject US war on Syria
Sat Sep 14, 2013 11:06:07

Three out of four Americans oppose military action in Syria, according to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll.

The poll of 776 Americans, conducted over three days this week, indicates that just 25 percent of Americans oppose diplomacy to deal with the crisis that was ignited by the Aug. 21 chemical attack in a Damascus suburb that US officials quickly blamed on the Syrian government.

The survey reflects the anti-war sentiment that has shadowed President Barack Obama's request for congressional authorization for a military strike against Syria in light of the chemical attack.

The poll found that Obama's speech to the nation on Tuesday had virtually no effect on Americans' reluctance to enter the massive foreign-backed insurgency in Syria after a decade of US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In polling of 1,386 Americans conducted Monday through Friday, about 62 percent said the United States should not intervene in Syria, virtually the same percentage as a week earlier.

Reuters/Ipsos pollsters also found that most Americans were not swayed by Obama's argument that the United States had a compelling interest to get involved in Syria to stop the spread of chemical weapons and protect US national security.

About 65 percent of Americans said Syria's problems were "none of our business," the same percentage that said so two weeks earlier.

Only 33 percent of the 776 people surveyed in the three-day poll said that responding to the use of chemical weapons in Syria was "in the national interests of the United States." About 47 percent said it was not.

When it comes to intervention in Syria, public support is "pretty well stabilized right under 1 in 5" Americans, Ipsos pollster Julia Clark said.

The United States has blamed the Syrian government for the attack, while Russia and Syria as well as independent countries and NGOs say it was the work of rebel forces.

An offer by Russia to help put Syria's stock of chemical weapons under international control has raised the possibility of an agreement that could help Obama avoid an embarrassing rejection from a skeptical Congress, or an unpopular military action.


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