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(09/09/07) -

U.S. Ponders Safety Six Years After 9/11

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – People in the United States hold differing views on whether their country is more secure now than it was at the time of a devastating terrorist attack, according to a poll by Opinion Dynamics released by Fox News. 48 per cent of respondents think the U.S. is safer today than before 9/11, while 33 per cent deem it less safe.

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – People in the United States hold differing views on whether their country is more secure now than it was at the time of a devastating terrorist attack, according to a poll by Opinion Dynamics released by Fox News. 48 per cent of respondents think the U.S. is safer today than before 9/11, while 33 per cent deem it less safe.

In addition, 15 per cent of respondents think the security situation has not changed, and four per cent are not sure.

Al-Qaeda operatives hijacked and crashed four airplanes in the U.S. on Sept. 11, 2001, killing nearly 3,000 people. In July 2004, the federal commission that investigated the events of 9/11 concluded that "none of the measures adopted by the U.S. government from 1998 to 2001 disturbed or even delayed the progress of the al-Qaeda plot" and pointed out government failures of "imagination, policy, capabilities, and management."

Afghanistan has been the main battleground in the war on terrorism. In October 2001, U.S. president George W. Bush ordered the invasion of Afghanistan, claiming that there would be "no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbour them." The conflict began after the Taliban regime refused to hand over Osama bin Laden, prime suspect in the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Bin Laden has not been seen publicly since the start of the war on terrorism, appearing only in several purportedly authentic video and audiotapes. On Sept. 7, a new video message featuring bin Laden was released. The al-Qaeda leader urged Americans to "embrace Islam," adding, "Iraq and Afghanistan and their tragedies; and the reeling of many of you under the burden of interest-related debts, insane taxes and real estate mortgages; global warming and its woes; and the abject poverty and tragic hunger in Africa; all of this is but one side of the grim face of this global system."

Bush discussed the video message, saying, "If al-Qaeda bothers to mention Iraq, it is because they want to achieve their objectives in Iraq, which is to drive us out and to develop a safe haven. And the reason they want a safe haven is to launch attacks against America or any other ally. And therefore, it is important that we show resolve and determination to protect ourselves, to deny al-Qaeda safe haven and to support young democracies, which will be a major defeat to their ambitions."

Polling Data

Do you think the United States is safer or less safe today than before 9/11?

 

Aug. 2007

Jul. 2005

Aug. 2005

Safer

48%

48%

52%

Less safe

33%

34%

28%

The same

15%

14%

15%

Don’t know

4%

4%

5%


Source: Opinion Dynamics / Fox News
Methodology: Telephone interviews with 900 registered American voters, conducted on Aug. 21 and Aug. 22, 2007. Margin of error is 3 per cent.