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U.S. Public Opinion over Iraq War Split

Posted March. 07, 2003 22:29,   


“I`d rather be a widow of a Navy man than a wife of a coward.”

“How many lives should be sacrificed for a gallon of oil?”

These slogans have appeared in demonstrations concerning the Iraq War for more than a month in cities all over the U.S. War seems to have started first among the American people themselves.

USA Today reported on Thursday that the Iraq War was added to their list of conversation subjects (politics and religion) and that whoever used them ended fights.

The newspaper analyzed that for the first time since the Vietnam War, the separation between the sexes, religions, races, generations, and education, has reached a peak, and offered reminders of the anti-war movement in the 60`s during the Vietnam War; however, it showed another kind of separation in American society.

The public anti-war movement against the Vietnam War actually started towards the end of 1967, two years after America had been fighting. And during the Gulf War in 1991, there was no debate, only a united attitude saying ‘we are one’ as the war approached. However with the current conflict on the horizon, anti-war and pro-war public opinion began even before the war has started and the gap between two is getting increasingly broad.

This means that Americans, who have a tradition of isolationism and objected to the paying of expenses to the U.N. as far back as 10 years ago, have changed their views towards a new kind of globalism that listens to the public opinion of world. In fact, the anti-war movement in America is exactly the same as general public opinion overseas in such places as Europe.

The feeling of uneasiness that the American territory can be attacked may be a possible cause for this negative attitude towards the war which could in essence, inflame the Islamic world.

Hye-Yoon Park parkhyey@donga.com