Home/Daniel Larison/Poll: Majority Thinks Iraq Aided Bin Laden, War Still Not Worth It

Poll: Majority Thinks Iraq Aided Bin Laden, War Still Not Worth It

Recent public opinion on Iraq suggests two basic findings: Most people are generally unhappy with President Bush’s handling of Iraq and they are resigned to the importance of seeing the commitment through.

Some other results from recent polls on Iraq:
Six in 10 think the president does not have a clear plan for bringing the Iraq situation to a successful conclusion.

Two-thirds say the level of casualties in Iraq has been unacceptable, when comparing the goals of the war to the costs.

A solid majority, about 55 percent, have said for months that U.S. troops must stay until the situation is stable.

People are closely divided on whether the war was a mistake, according to several polls.

A majority of people think Iraq aided al-Qaida before the war and had weapons of mass destruction – two opinions that have been widely debated.

People are closely divided on whether the war in Iraq helped or hurt in the war on terrorism. ~BostonChannel.com

Set aside for the moment that the majority that believes in the existence of Iraqi WMD and al-Qaeda links are simply wrong and ignorant. Consider what these figures imply: even though a majority continues to believe the falsehoods peddled by the administration about the “Iraqi threat,” a considerable number of the same people must also now be convinced that the war’s costs have exceeded the benefits. That means that some significant portion of people who really thought that Baghdad was supporting al-Qaeda do not believe the losses in the Iraq war to be worthwhile (presumably, most of those who believe these fictions are probably convinced of the worthiness of the cause). In short, even some who believe that Hussein was an ally of bin Laden believe too many Americans have died and been wounded in Iraq.

Yet somehow a dull, herd-like majority believes we must ‘stick it out’ until Washington decides to recognise what a majority of the public has already apparently perceived: in terms of costs and benefits, Iraq is a losing proposition for the United States. If the War Party cannot even rely on all the brainwashed citizens to support its wars, then the great cause of defeating Islamic terrorism will quickly run out of supporters.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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