It’s been 10 years since the Sept. 11 attacks, but Americans’ views on whether the U.S. is winning the war on terror are where they were just a month after the World Trade Centers fell, a new poll shows.
Just slightly more Americans — 46 percent — say they think the United States and its allies are winning, compared to the 42 percent who say they believe neither the terrorists nor the U.S. are succeeding, according to Gallup.
These figures mirror those taken in October 2001, the month the war in Afghanistan began, when 42 percent of Americans said the U.S. and its allies were winning the war on terror, and 44 percent said neither side.
Today, nine percent say the terrorists are winning — among the lowest figures Gallup has recorded — while 11 percent said they thought so in 2001.
Although views today and ten years ago are virtually identical, public perception has fluctuated tremendously in the time in between.
Most notably, at points in 2002 and 2003, two-thirds of Americans said they felt the U.S. was winning. But by the summer of 2003, Americans saying they believed the U.S. was winning fell below the majority level and has not polled above that since.
The all-time low for those feeling the U.S. was winning the war came in June 2007, with just 29 percent of Americans saying the U.S. and its allies were succeeding.
And most Americans — 59 percent — say terrorists will always find a way to launch major attacks no matter what the U.S. government does, a figure just one point off from the 60 percent who said the same in Sept. 2002.
The poll was conducted Aug. 11-14 and surveyed 1,008 adults. The maximum margin of sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.
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