Poll: Assad's Popularity Dries Up in Arab World

The Arab American Institute, summarizing their “Arab Attitudes Toward Syria: 2011” survey:

Just three years ago, we polled in 11 Arab countries asking respondents to name a leader they most respected. In five of these countries, Bashar Al Assad ranked among the top three mentioned – the only Arab leader to be mentioned in more than two states. As the results presented below make clear today, support for Al Assad has virtually dried up. […]

Most telling is the scant support the Syrian leader receives in Lebanon. […] In questions dealing with the Syrian leader, it is clear that whatever support he might have commanded in the past is now gone.

The most shocking to me is that he had popularity to begin with.. Read the rest here, and make sure to check the poll results in PDF.

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  • Jihad

    The more shocking is not to know or not to inform your readers that the president of this silly institute is a clown named James Zogby.

    Since Zogby gets money from Saudi Arabia and the UAE, it should not be a shock to get such results.

    For all the years he has spent in the US, he never uttered a word of criticism (not fake ones) against US policies in the region and he only sspoke against dictatorships hated by the Gulf sheikdoms. Shame on him and shame on the university that gave him his PhD.

  • Shiwa7ad

    Just like I was extremely skeptical about the poll that talked about the popularity of Iran in Lebanon a while ago, I am skeptical about this poll. It’s not, of course, that I dispute the fact that most Lebanese are perfectly aware of the repression that is happening in Syria. It’s just that the numbers aren’t very realistic.
    According to the poll 99% of the Lebanese think Assad can’t govern Syria anymore. 99% ? Just to know how absurd that figure is, you should know that if the sample was random and had a few hundred people, as the error margin suggests, the sample was statistically highly likely to contain about 2% of people with an IQ of 70 or less. Most probably those people aren’t even able to understand the question.
    On the other hand, if you take only the most hardcore hezbers, they are at least 5% of the population, and you can be sure that they will repeat what their leader says, especially if they are talking to a journalist working for a foreign institute, and especially if the institute has the word “American” in it. 5% is a very conservative estimate. And 82% think that Russia has a negative role, but 62% think Hezbollah has a positive role ?
    Can someone please explain to me how very different are the positions of Russia and Hezbollah ? Why does Russia get the most negative role and Hezbollah the most positive ?

    Quite frankly I think this poll has major credibility issues. Assuming the polling institute had good intentions, it should have done a better job at explaining the questions to the people, said how many people declined to answer each type of questions, explain how they presented themselves to the people they polled (for instance whether it could have been assumed they were anti-Assad) etc.

    My guess (and it’s just a guess) is that they had hidden intentions behind this poll, probably to give the impression that the Lebanese still have a high opinion of Hezbollah even though the Hezb supports a barbaric regime. On the other hand, it’s possible that they just f***ed up their poll.

    By the way, if the poll is accurate, all the talk about how Christians may support the Assad regime because he protects minorities is abysmally false. I happen to believe that it is indeed false, but also that this poll is inaccurate.

    • Shiwa7ad

      I hadn’t read Jihad’s reply before posting my own. If it’s true that Zogby gets his financial support from the Gulf monarchies, then it’s quite likely that he painted the picture they asked for, and he threw in the 62% support for Hezbollah in the hope of avoiding criticism from the Hezb supporters.

  • GK

    A cousin of my wife was a strong supporter of Syria and Hizballah until the Syrians started demonstrating against the regime and the Asad Regime started killing unarmed Syrian civilians!
    I am not surprised that people stopped supporting the Syrian Regime!


    Assad may likely ride this out for a good while because their is no outside media. The thing that may bring him down if anything is an internal coup, not a people’s revolution.