Poll: Majority Of Americans Are Worried About War

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Americans are worried that the United States will become engaged in a major war in the next four years, according to an NBC News/SurveyMonkey poll released Wednesday.

Thirty-six percent of Americans, according to the poll, would say they are “very worried” that the United States will become engaged in a major war in the next four years. Thirty percent were somewhat worried, 25 percent were not too worried, 8 percent were not at all worried and 2 percent had no answer.

However, Americans are overwhelmingly supportive of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a multinational military alliance of which the Trump administration has been critical. Eighty percent of respondents said NATO membership was good for the United States, while only 15 percent said it was bad for the country. Five percent had no answer.

On Russia, whose military might has been checked by NATO in the past, Americans are slightly more divided.

Seven percent of Americans would call Russia an ally, 28 percent would describe it as “friendly but not an ally,” 43 percent would call it “unfriendly,” and 18 percent would call it an “enemy.” Four percent had no answer.

NBC News noted, in a write-up of poll results, some interesting splits in friendliness toward Russia: Republicans and Republican-leaning respondents were split on their stance (50 percent call it an ally/friendly, 49 percent say unfriendly/enemy) while their Democratic and Democratic-leaning counterparts thought overwhelmingly – 75 percent – that it was unfriendly/enemy.

Finally, Americans are split on the military’s effectiveness in fighting terrorism: 47 percent of respondents said “using overwhelming military force is the best way to defeat terrorism.” Forty-nine percent said “relying too much on military force creates hatred that leads to more terrorism.” Four percent had no answer.

The NBC News/SurveyMonkey poll was conducted online from Feb. 13-19, from a sample 11,512 adults. The poll’s has a margin of error of 1.4 percentage points. More information on methodology can be found here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matt Shuham is a news writer for TPM. He was previously assistant editor of The National Memo and managing editor of the Harvard Political Review. He is available by email at mshuham@talkingpointsmemo.com and on Twitter @mattshuham.
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