Canadians support US in Iraq

04.08.03

72% of Canadians think we should have backed the U.S. (via Jerry at LGF).

According to a poll in today’s National Post, 72% of Canadians think that we should at least have offered “verbal” support to the U.S.’s initiative in Iraq, and 31% think that we should be helping militarily too. Either way, these people think Canada’s name should be on the list of the Coalition of the Willing.

A large majority of Canadians — 72% — believe Canada should have supported the U.S. at the start of the war against Iraq, according to an exclusive National Post/Global News poll.

The COMPAS survey shows 41% of people believe Canada should have given verbal support to the United States two weeks ago while 31% said the backing should have come in the form of both words and troops.

Still, only a slim majority, 56%, agreed with the U.S. decision to launch an invasion to bring down Saddam Hussein, while 34% opposed the attack.

The ambiguity between these numbers can be explained by the fact that the status quo changed – there’s a difference between people who agree with the war, and people who think that we should support our allies anyway. Besides, 56% is still a significant majority over the 34% opposed. If this was 1995 and those were referendum results, the PQ would have long declared sovereignty, that’s how strong a majority that is.

Politicians have been quick to spin this, saying Canadians are reacting with fear that our largest trading partner will be angry. But that excuse hasn’t been supported by the poll results:

Asked to choose a reason for joining the war effort, 42% of people said it would be because Saddam and his allies are a threat to the West.

Toppling Saddam to stop Islamist terrorists was chosen as a reason by 15%, with 14% choosing “Americans are our friends.”

Only 13% cited the U.S.’s position as Canada’s biggest trading partner as the reason to support the war.

[ . . . ]

Opposition to the U.S. war on Iraq centred around a “pacifist inclination,” according to Conrad Winn, chief executive of COMPAS Inc.

The statement “all war is bad” was supported by 31% of the people who answered a question about reasons to oppose the war, while 40% said better diplomacy would have solved the problem.

The poll, not surprisingly, also showed a major difference between anglophone and francophone Canadians. 49% of anglos wanted Canada to show more support for the U.S., but only 14% of francophones felt that way.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Hanthala 04.09.03 at 6:46 PM

What was the sample?

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2 segacs 04.09.03 at 8:37 PM

I linked the article, Hanthala. All that info is contained, including sample size, poll dates, and the margin of error, just like all polls published in the major newspapers. See for yourself.

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