British attitudes on drone strikes

Blog by Gabriel Carlyle

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 ...