American Public Opinion on Syria

In the wake of the chemical attacks in the suburbs of Damascus, the drumbeat is increasing for western military intervention in Syria. Surveys conducted since the Syrian conflict began in 2011 have found substantial reticence among the US public for taking direct military action. Americans want to avoid getting drawn into confrontations abroad, and they are also concerned about the consequences of arming Syrian rebel groups. At the same time, Americans continue to express support for military action in particular situations, such as multilateral interventions, in cases of humanitarian crisis or genocide, or when US lives are not risked in the effort. Taken together, the findings suggest that the public could be swayed by persuasive arguments or evidence that Syria has become one of these particular situations. But neither those arguments nor the evidence have been put forth yet. [cont.]

Dina Smeltz, Craig Kafura & Nabeel Khoury, Chicago Council on Global Affairs

Recent polls: Syria