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Old 02-23-2007, 12:01 PM
 
Location: Springfield, Missouri
2,815 posts, read 12,475,231 times
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I came across an article in an Israeli paper that had the latest finding about the American public's attitudes of foreign countries in a wide variety of categories including: Enemies, friends, vital or not to the U.S., important, unimportant, etc. It was pretty interesting but I didn't want to take the info. directly from a paper, so I went directly to Gallup's website and looked myself. Here're the latest findings and they are interesting (Gallup also explains on its site how it gathers the information, analyzes it, etc.).

(Feb. 1-4,2007 is the timeframe for the poll):
Countries Americans view as hot spots and unfriendly, but vitally important to America:
-Iraq, Iran, North Korea, Afghanistan, and China
Countries Americans view unfavorably, but not vitally important to U.S. interests:
-Venezuela, Pakistan, Cuba, Syria
Countries Americans view most favorably:
-Canada, Britain, Australia
Countries outside the English-speaking world a majority of Americans view favorably:
-India, Mexico, Israel, and Russia
American perceptions of the importance of each country to the U.S.:
1- Favorable, but not important (low pertinence friends):
-Canada, Australia, Great Britain, Japan, India, Mexico, Russia
2- Not Favorable and not important:
-Venezuela, Syria, Pakistan, Cuba
3- Not Favorable, but important:
-China, Afghanistan, North Korea, Iraq, Iran
4- Favorable and important:
-Israel
Defining the categories of 1-4 above:
1- : These are the countries that Americans view as low-pertinence friends. These are countries that a majority of Americans view favorably, but about which less than half of Americans say "what happens there" is vitally important to the United States.
2- : These are what Americans perceive as less relevant enemies -- countries that most Americans do not view favorably and that the majority of Americans do not think are vitally important in terms of events there affecting the United States.
3- : These are countries that Americans perceive as world hot spots: countries that most Americans rate negatively, but that a majority of Americans see as important to the United States.
4- Vital friend and important -- Americans select only one country, Israel, that a majority of Americans feel favorably toward and say that what happens there is vitally important to the United States.

Americans' views in percentages of the following 25 countries both favorably and unfavorably:
- Canada 92%/5%
- Australia 89%/5%
- Great Britain 89%/8%
- Germany 83%/11%
- Japan 82%/13%
- Brazil 71%/15%
- India 69%/22%
- Israel 63%/30%
- Mexico 60%/36%
- Egypt 60%/28%
- France 57%/38%
- Turkey 53%/31%
- Russia 53%/41%
- Jordan 51%/34%
- China 48%/47%
- Venezuela 41%/44%
- Saudi Arabia 35%/58%
- Pakistan 28%/64%
- Cuba 25%/68%
- Afghanistan 23%/71%
- Syria 21%/66%
- The Palestinian Authority 16%/75%
- Iraq 15%/82%
- North Korea 12%/82%
- Iran 9%/86%
*American favorability ratings for France have improved since 2003, but have not met pre-war levels of around 70%.

I was surprised by the polls findings regarding China. I didn't imagine the views were so unfavorable.
It's also interesting which countries Americans consider as friends, but whom they also dismiss as unimportant versus them choosing only one country as favorable and important.

The rest of it isn't much of a shock to me.
I thought it was interesting because we always hear what OTHER countries think of us, most of which seems negative and we rarely get to see what Americans actually think of the rest of the world. In that sense, this is quite interesting from the other side for a change.
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:52 PM
 
Location: Small patch of terra firma
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoMark View Post
2- Not Favorable and not important:
-Venezuela, Syria, Pakistan, Cuba

Defining the categories of 1-4 above:
2- : These are what Americans perceive as less relevant enemies -- countries that most Americans do not view favorably and that the majority of Americans do not think are vitally important in terms of events there affecting the United States.
What I find astonishing is the placement of Pakistan. Let’s put it into perspective, they are an Islamic country on the edges of the Middle East and they have nukes, they also have a large Islamic fundamentalist population. They are also a “supporter” on the war on terror so what happens if there is a revolution? Let’s not forget their somewhat tenuous relationship with India. What happens in Pakistan is vitally important to US interest and events there will affect the US. To put them in the “not important” category is showing a lack of intelligence and understanding on the pollees (is that what they are called).
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Old 02-23-2007, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Springfield, Missouri
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I agree that some of the American perceptions don't make sense in light of realpolitik. I don't think most Americans understand for instance exactly what is going on in Pakistan, or the position it is in squeezed inbetween a traditional enemy, India, and the U.S. in Afghanistan which Musharref basically says gave him an ultimatum after 9/11...help us or be destroyed (which is essentially what he claimed). The pressures both ways in Pakistan make it extremely unstable for sure as well as the apparent fact that it cannot control all of its own territory.
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Old 02-23-2007, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,193 posts, read 25,861,853 times
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Many of these figures surprised me, but I suppose it is reflective of those polled, some or many of whom may not be following politics and/or news regularly.

Pakistan and Syria both caught my attention. I think we've covered Pakistan, but I believe Syria is an integral player in Middle East politics and do not discount the role they can or may play in future events.
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Old 02-23-2007, 03:24 PM
 
3,042 posts, read 8,443,510 times
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favorable:

Italy, japan, s korea, poland, czech republic, australia, brazil, canada, germany, england, ireland
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Old 02-23-2007, 06:27 PM
 
Location: in my imagination
12,277 posts, read 19,807,137 times
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lets not forget New Zealand and the Danish.I frequent a NZ guitar board,they are our friends.

Venezuela...friendly people but Chavez is not our friend,which btw they are a major supplier of our oil,more so then the middle east.

none of the middle east is our friends,though Jordan would be counted on as more so.

and I can tell you,everybody does not hate America,Im not saying everyone agrees with American policy but I 've met good people on the internet,many view America favorably.

The Palestinian Authority ?....I became biased the day after 9-11 I saw them celebrating in the streets.
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