It’s pretty clear that Americans want to know where we stand with the rest of the world in regards to our invasion of Iraq. Its also apparent that once know we don’t really care where it is we stand as long as everyone else on the UN Security Council takes a stand themselves. A huge majority of Americans (78%) would support a war against Iraq with UN approval. A clear majority (54%) would support such military action should the United Nations object to that action. A clear minority (47%) would support such action without a resolution presented to the UN. This is all according to a Gallup Poll conducted March 14-15.
As has been the case throughout recent months, support for military action against Iraq is contingent on what happens in the United Nations, as evidenced by the following results from the weekend poll:
- Seventy-eight percent of Americans say they would favor invading Iraq if the United Nations passes a new resolution that sets specific conditions for Iraq to disarm, and just 19% would be opposed under these circumstances.
- If such a resolution were submitted, but the United Nations rejected it, 54% of Americans would favor military action and 43% would oppose it.
- If the United States decides not to offer any new resolutions on Iraq and goes forward with military action without a new U.N. vote at all, half of Americans would oppose an invasion of Iraq, while 47% would be in favor.
Clearly, support would be greater if the United Nations signs off on military action against Iraq, but a majority of Americans still say they favor it if the United Nations does not do so. Only in the case in which the United States essentially decides to bypass the United Nations does less than a majority (47%) favor military action. However, that option is a distinct possibility given the inability to find Security Council support for a tougher resolution on Iraq.
Never let it be said that G.W. Bush operates his administration based on polls.
I understand why the US/UK/Spain alliance has chosen to not pursue further UN support. If they pursue it and don’t get it then International law says that military action is illegal. If they don’t bother to seek permission then the UN and and their International Court does not have any jurisdiction. Still, I’m with the majority of people who wanted to see the US force the UN’s hand in this matter.