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Public Misperception


Project: History of US Interventions

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August 2002

       A USA Today poll shows 86% of the American public as thinking Baghdad is giving support to terrorist groups planning to strike America, with more than half believing Saddam had a hand in 9/11. [CNN Article]

Jan 2003

       Leading up to the war, polls indicate widespread misperception regarding Iraq - a meagre 17% of Americans realise that none of the Sept. 11 hijackers were Iraqi, and 41% believe Iraq already has nuclear weapons (again a claim which not even the Bush Administration has made). [Knight Ridder poll; Article; Article; Article; Article; Article] Another poll taken around the same time finds a full 81% of Americans believing Iraq poses a threat to the US. [Yahoo article]

Mar 18, 2003

       A CNN poll taken just two days before the war shows just how successfull the US propaganda machine has been in getting the American public to back the war - a full 51% of Americans are polled as believing that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein was responsible for September 11. Although the Bush Administration has tried hard (and failed) to establish links between Saddam and Al Qaeda, not even he has ever gone so far as to accuse Saddam of direct involvement in 9-11. [Article; Article; Article; Article; Article; Article]

June 2003

       Another poll gives some insight as to why, as shown above, half of America believe Saddam Hussein to be responsible for the attacks - 7 in 10 Americans polled say the Bush administration implied that Iraq and its leader, Saddam Hussein, were involved in the Sept. 11 attacks. [Article]

June 2003

       A third of the American public is polled as believing US forces to have found WMD in Iraq, with 22% actually believing Iraq to have used chemical or biological weapons in the war, despite no WMD having being either found or used. [Philadelphia Inquirer article; Article; Article; Article]

August 2003

       Polls show the American public believing the coalition fatalities in Iraq to be no higher than 50, at a time when the actual official figure lies at 295. [Article]

September 2003

       New polls repeat the picture shown back in June - 7 in 10 Americans continue to believe it to be 'likely or very likely Saddam Hussein was involved in Sept. 11'. [Washington Post article; Article]

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