Public Opinion in Pakistan: Concern About Extremist Threat Slips
Pakistanis have grown markedly less concerned about extremist groups, and are far more worried about the external threat from India. America’s image remains negative and support for U.S. involvement in the fight against extremists has waned. Many Pakistanis endorse extreme views about law, religion and society.
Obama More Popular Abroad than at Home, Global Image of U.S. Continues to Benefit
The president gets an enthusiastic thumbs up from the world (with the notable exception of the U.S.) for the way he has handled the world economic crisis. Obama’s personal popularity remains high, as do favorable views of the U.S. In a striking difference from the Bush years, while many around the world disagree with Obama’s foreign policies, the U.S. image has not been significantly dented as a result. Muslim countries, however, continue to hold a negative view of America and most also give Obama unfavorable ratings.
In the U.S. and around the globe, the spread of nuclear weapons is seen as a major threat, but not overwhelmingly so. Those concerned, however, look to the U.S. for leadership.
Europeans and Americans Share Concerns About Iran’s Nuclear Program
As international pressure mounts on Iran to halt its nuclear program, Americans and Europeans generally express serious concerns about the potential threat from a nuclear-armed Iran. These fears are somewhat muted in Russia
Public Supports Military Action Against Iran to Prevent Nuclear Weapons
About six-in-ten Americans feel it is more important to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons with military force than to avoid conflict. However, most also approve of direct negotiations and tougher economic sanctions. The efficacy of diplomacy is questioned, though.
Pakistan: Growing Concerns About Extremism, Continuing Discontent with U.S.
Pakistani public opinion has turned against al Qaeda and the Taliban, and concerns about Islamic extremism are widespread. At the same time, Pakistanis continue to express negative views of the U.S., although there is an openness to improving relations between the two countries.
India: Global Optimism, Local Fears
Recent Pew Global Attitudes surveys show India clearly embracing the economic aspects of globalization. But, even before the Mumbai terrorist attacks, the Indian public was greatly worried about terrorism.
Global Economic Gloom — China and India Notable Exceptions
Although views of the U.S. remain negative, and many now worry about the US economy’s impact on their nations, the U.S.’s favorable ratings have increased modestly since 2007 in 10 of 21 countries with comparative data. People around the world are following the U.S. election closely – and in most places surveyed, express greater confidence in Obama than in McCain.
Will Shared Concern about Iran Provide Common Ground for Middle East Negotiators in Annapolis?
Chances for progress at the Middle East conference should be bolstered by the presence of Saudi Arabia, which is viewed as a key ally in much of the Arab world.
Lebanon’s Precarious Politics
Behind the delayed selection of a new president, now scheduled for next week, lie complicated sectarian struggles, many of which do not run along a straight Muslim/Christian fault line.