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September 18, 2009

So Who Are We Willing To Defend? (Mætenloch)

Since today is turning into poll day, here's another one to chew on. These are the results of a poll of US adults that Rasmussen Reports did on Sep. 9th regarding which countries we regard as allies and whether the US should come to their defense. I've rearranged the chart in descending order of which countries we're willing to defend.

















































Country



Ally



Enemy



U.S. Should Defend



U.S. Should Not Defend



Canada



86%



4%



78%



16%



Great Britain



85%



5%



73%



18%



Israel



70%



8%



59%



29%



Mexico



54%



11%



59%



28%



Germany



66%



5%



53%



33%



Japan



59%



10%



46%



41%



France



61%



4%



45%



37%



Egypt



39%



9%



38%



41%



Afghanistan



15%



40%



33%



50%



Iraq



17%



41%



30%



57%



Pakistan



12%



28%



29%



49%



Saudi Arabia



23%



25%



26%



59%



Venezuela



20%



34%



25%



56%



Vietnam



21%



21%



19%



64%



Russia



17%



27%



15%



72%



China



19%



26%



13%



72%



North Korea



4%



75%



13%



74%



Iran



5%



70%



13%



74%


So a majority of Americans are willing to defend Canada, Great Britain, Israel, Mexico, and Germany which isn't really a surprise.

A couple other thoughts on this:
- Israel ranks higher than you'd think listening to the media. Most Americans view them as a solid ally. A poll from May found that 49% of Americans were willing to assist Israel with an attack on Iran. I'm guessing that the percentage has gone up since then.
- Japan's ranking ought to be higher based on their quiet but steadfast support in the last few decades. They're one of the few countries along with Australia that I think we could absolutely count on if the chips were down.
- Nearly 2/3 of Americans view France as an ally which just seems wrong. Realistically they're a neutral who will opportunistically assist or betray us according to their own interests. Which is pretty much the definition of a neutral I guess.
- People don't seem to like Iraq much - 41% view it as an enemy and less than a third would be willing to defend it. Is this due to the recent fighting or just inertia from the Saddam days?
- And what's up with the 4% who view North Korea as an ally? Do the Norks really have that many agents here or is ANSWER more influential than we think. The stupidity is boggling.

[quick bleg: Does anyone know how to center the values in the table? My html-fu is weak and I can't figure it out. Plus the table looks crappy in firefox - don't know why]

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posted by xgenghisx at 05:47 PM

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