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(07/25/07) -

Americans Want Withdrawal, Deadline in Iraq

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – More adults in the United States believe it is time for the coalition effort to draw to a close, according to a poll by the TNS released by the Washington Post and ABC News. 59 per cent of respondents think the U.S. should withdraw its military forces from Iraq in order to avoid further military casualties, up three points since April.

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – More adults in the United States believe it is time for the coalition effort to draw to a close, according to a poll by the TNS released by the Washington Post and ABC News. 59 per cent of respondents think the U.S. should withdraw its military forces from Iraq in order to avoid further military casualties, up three points since April.

The coalition effort against Saddam Hussein’s regime was launched in March 2003. At least 3,636 American soldiers have died during the military operation, and more than 26,800 troops have been wounded in action. 63 per cent of respondents believe the war with Iraq was not worth fighting.

In December 2005, Iraqi voters renewed their National Assembly. In May 2006, Shiite United Iraqi Alliance member Nouri al-Maliki officially took over as prime minister.

On Jan. 10, U.S. president George W. Bush introduced his new course of action for the coalition effort, which includes an increase in U.S. troop levels. On Jul. 12, Bush discussed the Iraqi government’s progress, declaring, “Of the 18 benchmarks Congress asked us to measure, we can report that satisfactory progress is being made in eight areas.”

The U.S. Congress has asked commander of the Multi-National Force – Iraq David Petraeus and U.S. ambassador in Iraq Ryan Crocker to provide a comprehensive assessment of the situation in Iraq in September. 55 per cent of respondents support legislation that would set a deadline for withdrawing U.S. combat forces from Iraq by next spring.

Yesterday, Bush discussed the current state of affairs, saying, “Our action to remove Saddam Hussein did not start the terrorist violence—and America withdrawal from Iraq would not end it. The al-Qaeda terrorists now blowing themselves up in Iraq are dedicated extremists who have made killing the innocent the calling of their lives. They are part of a network that has murdered men, women, and children in London and Madrid; slaughtered fellow Muslims in Istanbul and Casablanca, Riyadh, Jakarta, and elsewhere around the world. If we were not fighting these al-Qaeda extremists and terrorists in Iraq, they would not be leading productive lives of service and charity.”

Polling Data

Do you think the United States should keep its military forces in Iraq until civil order is restored there, even if that means continued U.S. military casualties; or, do you think the United States should withdraw its military forces from Iraq in order to avoid further U.S. military casualties, even if that means civil order is not restored there?

Jul. 2007

Apr. 2007

Feb. 2007

Keep forces

39%

42%

42%

Withdraw forces

59%

56%

56%

No opinion

3%

2%

2%

All in all, considering the costs to the United States versus the benefits to the United States, do you think the war with Iraq was worth fighting, or not?

Jul. 2007

Jun. 2007

May 2007

Worth fighting

36%

37%

33%

Not worth fighting

63%

61%

66%

No opinion

1%

2%

1%

Do you support or oppose legislation that would set a deadline for withdrawing U.S. combat forces from Iraq by next spring?

Support

55%

Oppose

43%

No opinion

2%

Source: TNS / Washington Post / ABC News
Methodology: Telephone interviews with 1,125 American adults, conducted from Jul. 18 to Jul. 21, 2007. Margin of error is 3 per cent.