Friday, October 15

World weighs in against Bush

"Clearly, if the world had a vote, the result on Nov. 2 would not be in doubt," The Guardian said in an editorial on the polling result. The surveys found that while a majority of opinion in those countries is still strongly disposed toward Americans in general, and that 80 to 90 percent of respondents said it was important to maintain good relations with the United States, there was sharp disagreement with American foreign policy under President Bush, as other international surveys have found.

In Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Russia, Spain, France and Canada, residents said the United States was wrong to have invaded Iraq. And by large margins, those surveyed in Canada (86 percent to 11 percent), Britain (73-17), Mexico (66-30) and South Korea ( 87-11) said the United States wielded excessive influence on international affairs. Organized by the newspaper La Presse in Montreal, the surveys were conducted in Britain, France, Spain, Russia, Israel, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Canada and Australia, a sampling of countries with strong historical ties or alliances with the United States. Support for President Bush was strongest in Israel and Russia, according to the polling in those countries, with 50 percent of Israelis favoring Mr. Bush's re-election and 24 percent favoring Mr. Kerry. In Russia, Mr. Bush was a 52-48 favorite.

But elsewhere, Mr. Kerry was a strong favorite, leading in percentage terms among Britons by 50-22, Mexicans by 55-20, Japanese by 51-30, South Koreans by 68-18 and among the French by 72-16.
The Guardian newspaper, which participated in the survey in Britain, pointed out that while Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry had emerged from their three debates neck and neck in the contest for votes in America, the rest of the world "has already made up its mind," said an editorial.But the newspaper went on to note with some concern that young Britons were turning against Britain's strongest ally in large numbers, pointing out that among Britons under 25, some 77 percent express a dislike for Mr. Bush.