British attitudes on drone strikes

Blog by Gabriel Carlyle
Date14 Jun 2012

In Britain 47% disapprove of US drone strikes, against 44% who approve. Along with the US and India, Britain is an outlier on this: witness the "disapprove" rates for Greece (90%), Egypt (89%), Jordan (85%), Turkey (81%), Spain (76%), Brazil (76%) and Japan (75%). (It may be worth pointing out that the question asked - with its reference to "target[ing] extermists" - was somewhat leading:  "Do you approve or disapprove of the United States conducting missile strikes from pilotless aircraft called  drones to target extremists in countries such as Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia").

There's also a marked relationship between approval / disapproval and both gender and ideology (the following figures are taken from the "complete report", which is linked-to from the above web-page).

Thus (again, sticking to the UK) only 31% of those on the "left" support such strikes, compared with 43% in the "center", and 56% on the "right".

Likewise, 57% of British men approve of such strikes, compared with only 30% of women.

All of which suggests that the first job for anti-drone campaigners here in the UK may be to win the battle for public opinion, and bump Britain's "disapproval" rates up to those of Germany, France, Spain and others ...

Topics: Drones