Americans prefer diplomacy over military engagement as threats evolve, poll finds


Most Americans would like the United States to step up diplomatic engagement with other countries on issues such as climate change and migration, and many believe Washington should cut back on military activities abroad, new poll finds public.

Part of those military cuts are expected to include reducing the number of US troops stationed overseas, said people interviewed by the Eurasia Group Foundation, a New York-based political risk consultancy.

More than 42% of those polled believed that the number of US military personnel stationed in places like Germany, Japan and the Persian Gulf region – currently around 200,000 – should be reduced and that Washington should reduce its commitments to defend these. nations.

Meanwhile, about 60% of those polled wanted the United States to increase its participation in international organizations and negotiations on matters of global importance. Only around 20% said less engagement was needed.

Almost 2,170 people were included in the survey. The report released on Tuesday did not include a margin of error.

“As the world grapples with issues that are not easily solved by military force – such as natural disasters linked to climate change and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic – this year’s investigation aimed to gain insight more precise understanding of the types of international engagement supported by the Americans. said the report.

Partisan differences over how the United States should engage with the world were more pronounced than they were in last year’s annual survey.

Half of respondents who identified as Democrats would like US engagement to rely more on international cooperation than military intervention, while over 80% of Republican respondents adopted approaches that would maintain a strong presence global military while reducing the country’s involvement in international institutions.

“Part of this could be attributed to the new Democratic presidency and the partisan opposition to its diplomatic efforts,” the report said.

Despite their political affiliations, about half of all Americans expressed a greater desire to protect democracy at home than to promote it abroad, according to the results.

“After waging a costly and never-ending war on terrorism, it is possible that many Americans are new to the turmoil at home, ranging from growing distrust of the electoral system to a deeply rooted history of racial injustice.” , indicates the report.

This year’s investigation was conducted between August 27 and September 1, during the chaotic withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan, which ended America’s longest war in nearly two decades.

When given several choices on what they thought was the most important lesson learned from the war in Afghanistan, the most popular choices, at 33%, were that the United States should refrain from building a nation and solve the political problems of other countries; and, with 29% agree, that the US military is best deployed when vital national interests are threatened.

Active-duty military personnel and veterans interviewed chose the same lessons at rates similar to those of the general public.

Overall, nearly 70% of Americans believe drones are less expensive than sending troops into combat and are an effective tool in combating terrorists in places like Afghanistan, according to the poll.

Two-thirds of those polled would also prefer to see the defense budget cut, with most citing a desire to redirect resources nationally, the results showed.

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