American Public Opposes Military Action In Syria

A new poll from Gallup shows that the American public overwhelmingly opposed involvement in the Syrian Civil War:.

Most Americans oppose U.S. military action in Syria, a new poll finds.

According to a Gallup survey out Friday, 68 percent of Americans say that the U.S. should not resort to military action if diplomatic and economic efforts don’t stop the civil war that is raging in Syria. Twenty-four percent of Americans would back military action. But Americans aren’t hopeful that other efforts to stop the conflict will succeed: 58 percent don’t think that economic and diplomatic measures alone will stop the war; 27 percent do..

As the poll itself shows, this is an attitude that crosses all partisan, ideological, and demographic categories:



One criticism of a poll like this, of course, is that it asks about “military force” without breaking it down into categories such as establishing no-fly zones, arming the rebels, or other such possible courses of action. Previous polls have at least known a slight majority in favor of arming the rebels, although that doesn’t mean that it would be an advisable strategy. Of course, it’s also worth noting that President Obama intervened in Libya even though majorities opposed action there, and he did so without even consulting Congress. So, there’s no guarantee he’ll listen to the polls here either.

FILED UNDER: Middle East, Public Opinion Polls, US Politics, , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. edmondo says:

    Poor John McCain. He was so prepared to watch others die for his folly.

  2. gVOR08 says:

    Amongst the public, you can’t even raise the 27% Crazification Factor in favor of military action. And yet a chunk of our Beltway VSPs are beating drums for it.

  3. Caj says:

    I should hope so, I certainly am. We have been in enough wars to last a lifetime. God knows what John McCain was doing going over there & interfering. Guess he must think he’s President number two in case President Obama is occupied and can’t make serious decisions!! Republicans will just not leave well alone! For some reason they think they are the only party that can handle anything to do with the military! We know they are very good at getting us into wars that are not necessary. For that they get five gold stars! Out of Afghanistan ASAP. Absolutely no involvement in Syria as regards boots on the ground or even arming them really. How do we know who we are giving arms to anyway? John McCain had no clue who was even behind him in the photo! So him saying we know who they are when we give out arms to them is laughable!

  4. Jenos Idanian says:

    We shouldn’t take sides in these kinds of conflict unless we have some convincing evidence that the side we back is actually better than the other side — and in this case, I don’t see anything about the Syrian rebels that makes them better than Assad.

    Much like Egypt and Libya. But that didn’t stop Obama from getting us involved in those…

  5. Dazedandconfused says:

    He did consult “Congress”, the parts of it Presidents are required to. “Congress” voted to keep funding it too.

    The issue is with the way the law is currently structured. If we want to have full Congressional approval on all actions we could certainly have it, but we haven’t had a Congress with a desire to assert their powers as stipulated in the Constitution in the last 70 years or so. They don’t want things that way. Might have something to do with an inability to do much anything quickly.