Polls Show Chemical Weapons Affect Public’s View on Syria

The Obama administration, which had long resisted sending weapons to antigovernment forces in Syria’s civil war, has announced plans to supply the rebel forces with small arms after concluding that the troops of President Bashar al-Assad have used chemical weapons against them.

The shift in administration policy on Syria seems reflective of public opinion. Polls have consistently shown Americans are deeply wary of the United States becoming involved in the fighting in Syria. But they also show that public support for intervention increases sharply under circumstances where it is confirmed that the Assad regime used chemical weapons. [cont.]

Micah Cohen, FiveThirtyEight (NYT)

Recent polls: Syria