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article imageGlobal poll: U.S. is regarded as greatest threat to peace

By Ken Hanly     Jan 2, 2014 in World
In a world opinion poll the U.S. is regarded as the biggest threat to world peace. The poll was conducted by Win/Gallup International. The survey was first started in 1977.
The poll sampled around 1,000 people in each of 65 different countries and a total of 66,805 respondents. In aggregate terms 24 percent of those polled thought that the United States was the greatest threat to world peace today. The runner-up was Pakistan but only eight percent thought it the greatest threat. China came third at 6 percent. North Korea, Israel and Iran all came in at 5 percent.
In Russia 54 percent thought that the U.S. was the greatest threat to world peace and in another rival China the figure was 49 percent. However, even in Turkey and Greece, both NATO partners, 45 percent thought that the U.S. was the greatest threat to world peace and 44 percent in Pakistan. In Latin America, the U.S. topped the list for respondents in Mexico (37 percent), Brazil (26 percent) and Peru (24 percent)
A somewhat surprising result is the case of Ukraine where a full 33 percent felt that the U.S. was the greatest threat to world peace compared to only five percent who thought that Russia was. Some European countries were divided with 17 percent of Germans picking the U.S. as the greatest threat just ahead of Iran at 16 percent. The Brits placed both the U.S. and Iran in first place at 15 percent each.
Americans themselves placed Iran in first place, then Afghanistan, and North Korea. However, even 13 percent of Americans agreed that the U.S. was the greatest threat to world peace.
BBC world affairs correspondent Paul Adams said of the results: "The world's sometimes eager, sometimes reluctant policeman is the subject of widespread animosity. Predictable in some areas (the Middle East and North Africa), but less so in others. In the Americas themselves, decades of U.S. meddling have left an awkward legacy. Its neighbors, Mexico (37 percent) and Canada (17 percent), clearly have issues. Even 13 percent of Americans see their own country as a danger."
When asked what country they would like to move to if there were no barriers, the winner was the United States as well at 9 percent. Australia was at seven percent along with Canada and then Switzerland at six percent. So even if the US is the greatest threat to world peace, people still want to move there.
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