Most Muslims Want Democracy, Personal Freedoms, and Islam in Political Life
More than a year after the first stirrings of the Arab Spring, there continues to be a strong desire for democracy in Arab and other predominantly Muslim nations. A substantial number in key Muslim countries also want a large role for Islam in political life. Meanwhile, few think the U.S. favors democracy in the Middle East.
Chapter 5. Views of Extremism
Majorities in most of the predominantly Muslim nations surveyed remain worried about Islamic extremism in their countries, especially in Lebanon, but concern about extremism has declined sharply in Turkey since 2011. Few express positive views of extremist groups Hamas and Hezbollah. Still, both groups have substantial minority support in several countries. Al Qaeda and the […]
Chapter 3. Relations With India
Pakistanis and Indians continue to hold largely negative opinions of one another. Nearly three-quarters of Pakistanis have an unfavorable view of their neighbor, little changed from last year but up significantly from 2006, when only 50% expressed a negative view. A broad majority also names India as the biggest threat to their nation. Similarly, most […]
Chapter 2. Attitudes Toward Extremism
Islamic extremism remains a pressing issue for most Pakistanis, although concern has ebbed somewhat over the last few years. Today, about half of the public is either very or somewhat worried that extremist groups could take control of their country. Only about one-in-three now support using the military to fight extremists, down substantially from three […]
Pakistani Public Opinion Ever More Critical of U.S.
Following a year of tensions between their country and the United States, Pakistanis continue to hold highly unfavorable views of the U.S. and offer bleak assessments of the relationship between the two nations. And President Obama is held in exceedingly low regard. Additionally, over the last few years, Pakistanis have become less willing to work with the U.S. on efforts to combat extremist groups.
On Anniversary of bin Laden’s Death, Little Backing of al Qaeda
A year after the death of Osama bin Laden, a new survey of Muslim publics shows al Qaeda is widely unpopular, with majorities expressing negative views of the terrorist group in Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Turkey and Lebanon. Furthermore, before his death in 2011, support for bin Laden himself had waned considerably among Muslims around the world.
Chapter 5. Views of Extremism
Concerns about Islamic extremism have declined in Pakistan in recent years, but most Pakistanis continue to see it as a problem facing their nation. Moreover, many worry that extremists could take control of their country, and pluralities see al Qaeda and the Taliban as serious threats. The violence associated with Islamic extremism is the primary […]
Chapter 4. Views of Extremist Groups and Suicide Bombing
On balance, extremist groups tend to receive negative ratings in the predominantly Muslim nations surveyed, although there are significant levels of support for these organizations in many countries. There is no country in which a majority has a favorable opinion of the militant Palestinian organization Hamas. Among Palestinians themselves, Hamas’ image has declined in recent […]
Arab Spring Fails to Improve U.S. Image
Support for democracy is high throughout much of the Middle East, but the Arab Spring has not led to an improvement in America’s image in the region. Instead, in key Arab nations and in other predominantly Muslim countries, views of the U.S. remain negative. On balance, extremist groups also viewed negatively, although they receive significant levels of support in some countries.
Osama bin Laden Largely Discredited Among Muslim Publics in Recent Years
In the months leading up to Osama bin Laden’s death, a survey of Muslim publics around the world found little support for the al Qaeda leader. Al Qaeda itself also received largely negative ratings among Muslim publics in the 2011 survey.
Muslim Publics Divided on Hamas and Hezbollah
Extremist groups Hamas and Hezbollah continue to receive mixed ratings from Muslim publics. However, opinions of al Qaeda and its leader, Osama bin Laden, are consistently negative; only in Nigeria do Muslims offer views that are, on balance, positive toward al Qaeda and bin Laden.
Concern About Extremist Threat Slips in Pakistan
Overwhelmingly, Pakistanis see terrorism as a major problem in their country and most have negative views of the Taliban and al Qaeda, but they have become less concerned over the last year that extremists will take over Pakistan. Meanwhile, Pakistanis continue to express serious concerns about the U.S. and their longtime rival India.
Chapter 1. The Battle Against Extremism
The Taliban and al Qaeda remain generally unpopular in Pakistan, and Pakistanis continue to overwhelmingly reject the suicide terrorism associated with both groups. Many Pakistanis say the Taliban poses a serious threat to their country and about half of those surveyed are worried that extremists could take control of Pakistan. However, concerns about an extremist […]
Chapter 2. Attitudes Toward the U.S. and President Barack Obama
The image of the United States remains overwhelmingly negative in Pakistan, and few Pakistanis express confidence in U.S. President Barack Obama to do the right thing in world affairs. America’s favorability in Pakistan is lower than in 18 of 21 countries other than the U.S. included in the 2010 Pew Global Attitudes survey and matches […]
Chapter 3. Relations With India
Pakistanis see India as a greater threat to their country than the Taliban or al Qaeda. Fully 53% of respondents consider India “the greatest” threat to Pakistan. Yet, despite the high levels of threat perception, Pakistanis support better relations with their neighbor. More than seven-in-ten (72%) consider it important that their country’s relations with India […]
Chapter 7. Attitudes Toward Extremism Among Muslim Publics
As in other recent Pew Global Attitudes surveys, this year’s survey finds only limited support for terrorism among Muslim publics. There is no country in which a majority of Muslims endorse suicide bombing, voice confidence in Osama bin Laden, or express a favorable view of al Qaeda. Still, a significant number of Muslims in some […]
Pakistani Public Opinion
Pakistani public opinion has turned against al Qaeda and the Taliban, and no fewer than 69% of those polled express worry that extremists will take control of the nation. Ratings for President Asif Ali Zardari have also plummeted, as Pakistanis see their country in crisis.
Chapter 6. Pakistan
The current poll, conducted after the February parliamentary elections in Pakistan but prior to the resignation of former President Pervez Musharraf and the election of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leader Asif Ali Zardari as the country’s new president, found that solid majorities held favorable views of both Zardari and Pakistan Muslim League (N) party leader […]
Unfavorable Views of Jews and Muslims on the Increase in Europe
Growing numbers of people in several major European countries say they have an unfavorable opinion of Jews, and opinions of Muslims also are more negative than they were several years ago. These findings are from a new Pew Global Attitudes Project report, based on data gathered from 24 countries from regions throughout the world, that examine worldwide religiosity and take a close look at Muslim publics’ attitudes toward terrorism, Osama bin Laden, Hamas, Hezbollah and more.
III. Islam, Modernity and Terrorism
In most Western countries, the prevailing view among non-Muslims is that there is a conflict between being a devout Muslim and living in a modern society. But Muslims generally disagree – including Muslims who live in major European countries. These contrasting views are particularly noteworthy in Germany and Spain. Fully 70% of the general public […]
The Great Divide: How Westerners and Muslims View Each Other
After a year marked by riots over cartoon portrayals of Muhammad, a major terrorist attack in London, and continuing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, most Muslims and Westerners see relations between them as generally bad.
How the World Has Changed
Despite their deep differences over the causes and consequences of the terror attacks, opinion leaders in every region agree that Sept. 11 marked the beginning of a new chapter in world history. About eight-in-ten (78%) U.S. respondents, and virtually the same number elsewhere, believe that the terrorist attacks and subsequent conflict opened a new era. […]