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Gallup Poll: Americans Deceived Regarding United States’ Image Around the World

This disparity between reality and the public’s view of reality is clear in the data.

Eric Zuesse

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Originally posted at strategic-culture.org:


Gallup issued on February 28th its “2019 Rating World Leaders” report, subtitled “The US vs. Germany, China and Russia,” and said that “The world still frowned on US leadership more than the leadership of any other country asked about in 2018.” All four of the countries’ leaderships received approval-ratings from people worldwide in only the 30-39% range, and this low score for the US leadership (which was approved by merely 31% of people sampled worldwide during 2018) represented an enormous decline for the United States, which during the Obama years had received scores ranging from 41% to 49% approval. However, a Gallup report which had been issued only three days earlier, on February 25th, indicated that the American people are blissfully ignorant of any of this reality, and instead believe that the global approval-rating of the United States itself is high and is rising, not, as it actually is, low and declining.

In fact, on January 18th of just a year back, 2018, Gallup had headlined “World’s Approval of US Leadership Drops to New Low”, and this plunge in the global rating of America’s leadership could reasonably cause a person to expect a decline in the American public’s view of America’s national image in foreign countries, but it’s not showing up, at all. The exact contrary is being displayed in the recent data. On February 25th of 2019, Gallup bannered, “Americans’ Perceptions of US World Image Best Since 2003”, and reported that “58% say US rates very or somewhat favorably in world’s eyes.” This disparity between reality and the public’s view of reality, is clear in the data despite all of these polls’ having altogether ignored almost all of the Islamic-majority nations, where there has long been a very negative view prevailing both of the United States and of US leadership. (The US regime prefers its pollsters to sample mainly favorable countries regarding its public image around the world, and so that is what is done.)

The last time that Gallup surveyed America’s global public image (and this isn’t the world’s approval of US leadership, but approval of the US itself, such as was measured and reported by Gallup’s report issued on 25 February 2019) was in “1991 Feb 28-Mar 2”, and the global public image of the United States was overwhelmingly favorable at that time — 95% favorable versus only 3% unfavorable — by far the highest of any country rated at that time, though today a few countries are nearly as high as that: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, UK (“Great Britain”), Japan, and Norway, all show nearly as high in Gallup’s global polling now, as America did then. Gallup’s surveys never mentioned any other of the Scandinavian countries than Norway, nor mentioned Switzerland nor Netherlands, so those countries (which might even lead the ratings if they had been included) might likewise have been close to what America’s sky-high global approval-rating had been, at the time of the Cold War’s supposed end, in 1991. (Secretly, the US Government actually continued the Cold War even though Russia was unaware of the fact, and this one-sided and secret, purely aggressive, continuation was and is kept secret from both the American and global publics.)

However, Pew has been polling this matter — the global image of the US itself — ever since, in 2008, Pew started taking it over from the Office of Research of the US Department of State.

When Pew introduced their 2018 report concerning this matter, of America’s global image, on 2 October 2018 at the CSIS or Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, the first question raised after the presentation was about America’s overall public image, and the presenter, with apparent reluctance, summed it up by acknowledging, at 29:05, “The US is definitely seen in a much more negative light than it was a few years ago. … People [worldwide] are much less likely to express a favorable opinion of the US … By and large on the questions we asked at least, we see much more negative views around the globe.”

One would reasonably expect this fact to be showing up in the American public’s view of how foreigners see America, but it’s not showing up, at all; and, in fact, the exact opposite is being displayed in the data. Obviously, then, the major news-media that over 95% of the US public receive their ‘news’ from have been hiding from the public the realities which are causing this steep plunge in America’s (the American nation’s) global approval-ratings. Whereas the approval-rating of the US went down, the American public thinks it has instead gone up, and only the country’s major ‘news’-media can be to blame for that extreme US fantasy-world, which is being displayed in the data. It’s the very same fantasy-world — and for the very same reasons — which overwhelming majorities of the American people believed in 2002 and 2003, when the US regime imposed the fraud that Saddam Hussein was building weapons of mass destruction (“WMD”) and that he supported Al Qaeda. All of the US mainstream, and virtually all of its minor, news-media were stenographically pumping these (even the most blatant) lies to the public, and therefore they’re co-responsible along with the US dictators for America’s having destroyed Iraq. That couldn’t have happened without the propaganda-operation’s compliance. And America has the same national press now as it did then, though some of the corporate names have changed since 2002. The ownership and control of America’s major news-media are obviously being very wrongly determined, and America cannot even possibly become again a functioning even partial democracy unless and until that situation — the system for determining the control of the corporations that constitute the US ‘news’-reporting oligopoly — is fundamentally and permanently (perhaps even Constitutionally) amended. America’s stenographic press merely uncritically reports the Government’s bipartisan lies (not the Democratic or the Republican Party’s lies, which can and do become exposed, but instead  the lies that both Parties spout — the bipartisan lies which reflect the US regime. These are lies such as that WMD existed in Iraq in 2002, and that Russia and not the US is the world’s aggressor-nation seeking global conquest, and that America protects peace around the world, instead of its being the world’s top perpetrator of coups and of military invasions, by far the world’s biggest aggressor). America cannot become a functioning, actual, democracy, at all, unless and until the ownership and control of its major news-media has become ripped away from the present controllers and also becomes legally fully accountable in honest courts for any propaganda (regime-pumped lies) that it issues. Neither domestic policy nor international policy can be democratic in such a nation. America’s major ‘news’-media are obviously not trustworthy. Consequently, America isn’t a democracy. (Consequently, this news-report, which is exposing America’s major ‘news’-media as being instead national propaganda-media, is going to be rejected — not published — by all of them, though it’s being submitted to all of them, as well as to most other US international-news reporting sites.)

The full written 2018 report from Pew is online as “America’s International Image Continues to Suffer.” It opens by saying: “A year after global opinion of the United States dropped precipitously, favorable views of the US remain at historic lows in many countries polled. In addition, more say bilateral relations with the US have worsened, rather than improved, over the past year.”

The following highlights are taken from Pew’s verbal presentation to the CSIS:

[19:56] 70% say no to “US takes into account the interests of other countries.” 28% say yes to that.

[21:53] “Fewer Now Say US Takes into Account Their Interests.” The change (which is since the end of Obama’s Presidency) is -31% in Germany, -23 South Africa, -22 Brazil, -19 Mexico, -17 France, -16 Kenya, -16 Italy, -13 Indonesia, -13 UK, -13 Canada, -12 South Korea, -11 Philippines, -10 Japan, and -8 Spain. In Russia, 15% said yes to that question at the end of Obama’s Presidency, and that figure then soared to 41% in 2017, but it declined to only 26% in 2018. Perhaps now it’s again around 15%, as more and more Russians come to recognize that the US regime is set upon conquering Russia — recognize that anti-communism (prior to 1991, when the Soviet Union ended) was only an excuse for building America’s global control, an empire controlling the entire world, and that America, after the death of FDR and increasingly since then, is fascist, no authentic democracy at all. This fascism certainly explains Iraq 2003, Libya 2011, Syria 2011-2018, Yemen 2015-now, Ukraine 2014 (a US coup in February 2014 that the regime instead calls a Russian ‘invasion’, which occurred thereafter in response and was no invasion at all, but defensive for Russia, against a fascist regime on its doorstep), and Venezuela 2017-now.

[22:51] “US Perceived to Be Less Involved in Tackling Global Issues.”  Percentages saying “less” involved, as opposed to “more” involved, were found in every EU country that was surveyed, except that it’s equal (= percentages), 22% saying US is both “less” and “more” involved, in Poland — but nowhere else that Pew was polling in Europe. Basically, Trump’s rejections of the Paris Climate Agreement and of the nuclear agreement with Iran, and his outlawing refugees from Syria and some other nations the US bombed, and his determination to wall-off the US from Mexico, have cemented the global public’s view of America as being a hostile country. But nonetheless, Gallup was able to headline on February 25th“Americans’ Perceptions of US World Image Best Since 2003”.

Gallup’s findings regarding not the world’s favorability toward the US but the American public’s estimation of how favorably the world views the US, were reported there, and opened:

Fifty-eight percent of Americans believe the US rates “very” or “somewhat favorably” in the world’s eyes. Though the current figure is up just slightly from the 55% recorded last year, it represents the highest figure Gallup has found since 2003.

The increase in the overall figure is the result of an increase in the percentage of political independents saying the US is rated favorably abroad, up eight percentage points, from 50% to 58%. Meanwhile, the views of Americans identifying as Republican or Democratic haven’t changed.

So: America’s non-aligned or “independent” voters are even more deceived about this matter — especially about the stark decline in the public’s approval of America — than America’s partisan voters are.

This Gallup report furthermore says:

At the same time, Americans are fairly upbeat about the country’s global image, the percentage satisfied with the position of the US in the world today is also at a relatively high ebb.

Whereas in 2019 Gallup finds that 58% of Americans think the world views America favorably, versus 41% unfavorably, and in 2018 these figures were almost as high, 55% favorably and 45% unfavorably, the figures in the very first month of Trump’s being in the White House were the reverse, 42% favorably versus 57% unfavorably; and, back in 2016 they were 54% favorably versus 45% unfavorably — almost but not quite as high as today. In fact, the current 58% favorably versus only 41% unfavorably is the rosiest view that Americans have displayed in these Gallup polls regarding how they think foreigners view the US, extending all the way back to Gallup’s polling on 14-16 April of 2003 — 61% at that time thinking the world viewed the US favorably, versus 37% unfavorably, and this was just a month after the US had invaded and destroyed Iraq.

So: Ever since America’s Government destroyed Iraq on 20 March 2003, Americans haven’t had a rosier view of foreigners’ opinions of the United States.

Such a deceived nation’s public is, obviously, a reflection of that nation’s ruling regime, both its Government and its stenographic mainstream ‘news’-media, which won’t publish reports such as the present one, because such reports, as this one, would be exposing the deceived public that results from America’s fraudulent and highly controlled (by America’s 585 billionaires) mainstream press. This reality of the press-problem in America is not what they call ‘fake news’ media, but it’s instead the mainstream media themselves that present to their public actually false ‘news’, real lies (that are the official government lies, bipartisan lies), to such a huge extent as to achieve this enormous disparity between the reality and the public’s warped view of that ‘reality’, regarding America’s international image. What’s important here is not this particular news-item itself, nearly so much as it is what that news-item means — what it indicates. What it indicates is enormous.

This news-report is therefore being offered free of charge to all US media to publish, so as to help rectify the rabidly false impression that exists. Obviously, any news-media that aren’t publishing this report are trying to hide this reality — they evidently, and quite clearly, want to continue this particular deception of the public. But the sites that publish this are honest — as any reader here can easily verify by clicking onto this article’s links.

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The conclusion of Russiagate, Part II – news fatigue across America

The daily barrage of Russiagate news may have been a tool to wear down the American public as the Deep State plays the long game for control.

Seraphim Hanisch

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Presently there is a media blitz on across the American news media networks. As was the case with the Russiagate investigation while it was ongoing, the conclusions have merely given rise to a rather unpleasant afterbirth in some ways as all the parties involve pivot their narratives. The conclusion of Russiagate appears to be heavily covered, yet if statistics here at The Duran are any indication, there is a good possibility that the public is absolutely fatigued over this situation.

And, perhaps, folks, that is by design.

Joseph Goebbels had many insights about the use of the media to deliver and enforce propaganda. One of his quotes runs thus:

The best propaganda is that which, as it were, works invisibly, penetrates the whole of life without the public having any knowledge of the propagandistic initiative.

and another:

That is of course rather painful for those involved. One should not as a rule reveal one’s secrets, since one does not know if and when one may need them again. The essential English leadership secret does not depend on particular intelligence. Rather, it depends on a remarkably stupid thick-headedness. The English follow the principle that when one lies, it should be a big lie, and one should stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.

If there has ever been a narrative that employed these two principles, it is Russiagate.

A staggering amount of attention has been lavished on this nothing-burger issue. Axios reports that an analytics company named Newswhip tallied an astounding 533,074 web articles published about Russia and President Trump and the Mueller investigation (a number which is being driven higher even now, moment by moment, ad nauseam). Newsbusters presently reports that the networks gave 2,284 minutes to the coverage of this issue, a number which seems completely inaccurate because it is much too low (38 hours at present), and we are waiting for a correction on this estimate.

Put it another way: Are you sick of Russiagate? That is because it has dominated the news for over 675 days of nearly wall-to-wall news cycles. The political junkies on both sides are still pretty jazzed up about this story – the Pro-Trump folks rejoicing over the presently ‘cleared’ status, while of course preparing for the upcoming Democrat / Deep State pivot, and the Dems in various levels of stress as they try to figure out exactly how to pivot in such a manner that they do not lose face – or pace – in continuing their efforts to rid their lives of the “Irritant-in-Chief” who now looks like he is in the best position of his entire presidency.

But a lot of people do not care. They are tired.

I hate to say it (and yes, I am speaking personally and directly), but this may be a dangerous fatigue. Here is why:

The barrage of propaganda on this issue was never predicated on any facts. It still isn’t. However, as we noted a few days ago, courtesy of Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, at present, 53% of US registered voters believe that the Trump campaign worked with Russia to influence the 2016 election.

That means 53% of the voting public now believes something that is totally false.

Many of these people are probably simply exhausted from the constant coverage of this allegation as well. So when the news came out Sunday night that there was no evidence of collusion and no conclusive evidence, hence, of obstruction of justice by the Trump Administration – in other words, this whole thing was a nothing burger – will this snap those 53% back into reality?

Probably not. Many of them may well be so worn down that they no longer care. Or worse, they are so worn out that they will continue to believe the things they are told that sustain the lie, despite its being called out as such.

C.S. Lewis wrote about this peculiarity of human nature, in particular in the seventh book of his Chronicles of Narnia. After a prolonged and fierce assault on the sensibilities of the Narnians with the story that Aslan, the Christ figure of this world, was in fact an angry overlord, selling the Narnians themselves into slavery, and selling the whole country out to its enemy, with the final touch being that Aslan and the devilish deity of the enemy nation were in fact one and the same, the Narnians were unable to snap back to reality when it was shown conclusively and clearly that this was in fact not the case.

The fear that was instilled from the use of false narratives persisted and blocked the animals from reality.

Lewis summarized it this way through the thoughts of Tirian, the lead character in this tale:

Tirian had never dreamed that one of the results of an Ape’s setting up as a false Aslan would be to stop people from believing in the real one. He had felt quite sure that the Dwarfs would rally to his side the moment he showed them how they had been deceived. And then next night he would have led them to Stable Hill and shown Puzzle to all the creatures and everyone would have turned against the Ape and, perhaps after a scuffle with the Calormenes, the whole thing would have been over. But now, it seemed, he could count on nothing. How many other Narnians might turn the same way as the Dwarfs?

This is part of the toll this very long propaganda campaign is very likely to take on many Americans. It takes being strongly informed and educated on facts to withstand the withering force of a narrative that never goes away. Indeed, if anything, it takes even more effort now, because the temptation of the pro-Trump side will be to retreat to a set of political talking points that, interestingly enough, validate Robert Mueller’s “integrity” when only a week ago they were attacking this as a false notion.

This is very dangerous, and even though Mr. Trump and his supporters won this battle, if they do not come at this matter in a way that shows education, and not merely the restating of platitudes and talking points that “should be more comfortable, now that we’ve won!”

The cost of Russiagate may be far higher than anyone wants it to be. And yes, speaking personally, I understand the fatigue. I am tired of this issue too. But the temptation to go silent may have already taken a lot of people so far that they will not accept the reality that has just been revealed.

Politics is a very fickle subject. Truth is extremely malleable for many politicians, and that is saying it very nicely. But this issue was not just politics. It was slander with a purpose, and that purpose is unchanged now. In fact things may even be more dangerous for the President – even risking his very life – because if the powers that are working behind the people trying to get rid of President Trump come to realize that they have no political support, they will move to more extreme measures. In fact this may have already been attempted.

We at The Duran reported a few months ago on a very strange but very compelling story that suggested that there was an attempted assassination and coup that was supposed to have taken place on January 17th of this year. It did not happen, but there was a parallel story that noted that the President may have been targeted for assassination already no fewer than twelve times.  Hopefully this is just tinfoil-hat stuff. But we have seen that this effort to be rid of President Trump is fierce and it is extremely well-supported within its group. There is no reason to think that the pressure will lighten now that this battle has been lost.

The stakes are much too high, and even this long investigation may well have been part of the weaponry of the group we sometimes refer to as the “Deep State” in their effort to reacquire power, and in their effort to continue to pursue both a domestic and geopolitical agenda that has so far shown itself to be destructive to both individuals and nations all over the world.

Speculation? Yes. Needless? We hope so. This is a terrible possibility that hopefully no reasonable person wants to consider.

Honestly, folks, we do not know. But we had to put this out there for your consideration.

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Parliament Seizes Control Of Brexit From Theresa May

Zerohedge

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Schaeuble, Greece and the lessons learned from a failed GREXIT (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 117.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris examine a recent interview with the Financial Times given by Wolfgang Schäuble, where the former German Finance Minister, who was charged with finding a workable and sustainable solution to the Greek debt crisis, reveals that his plan for Greece to take a 10-year “timeout” from the eurozone (in order to devalue its currency and save its economy) was met with fierce resistance from Brussels hard liners, and Angela Merkel herself.

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Via FT

“Look where we’re sitting!” says Wolfgang Schäuble, gesturing at the Berlin panorama stretching out beneath us. It is his crisp retort to those who say that Europe is a failure, condemned to a slow demise by its own internal contradictions. “Walk through the Reichstag, the graffiti left by the Red Army soldiers, the images of a destroyed Berlin. Until 1990 the Berlin Wall ran just below where we are now!”

We are in Käfer, a restaurant on the rooftop of the Reichstag. The views are indeed stupendous: Berlin Cathedral and the TV Tower on Alexanderplatz loom through the mist. Both were once in communist East Berlin, cut off from where we are now by the wall. Now they’re landmarks of a single, undivided city. “Without European integration, without this incredible story, we wouldn’t have come close to this point,” he says. “That’s the crazy thing.”

As Angela Merkel’s finance minister from 2009 to 2017, Schäuble was at the heart of efforts to steer the eurozone through a period of unprecedented turbulence. But at home he is most associated with Germany’s postwar political journey, having not only negotiated the 1990 treaty unifying East and West Germany but also campaigned successfully for the capital to move from Bonn.

For a man who has done so much to put Berlin — and the Reichstag — back on the world-historical map, it is hard to imagine a more fitting lunch venue. With its open-plan kitchen and grey formica tables edged in chrome, Käfer has a cool, functional aesthetic that is typical of the city. On the wall hangs a sketch by artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude, who famously wrapped the Reichstag in silver fabric in 1995.

The restaurant has one other big advantage: it is easy to reach from Schäuble’s office. Now 76, he has been confined to a wheelchair since he was shot in an assassination attempt in 1990, and mobility is an issue. Aides say he tends to avoid restaurants if he can, especially at lunchtime.

As we take our places, we talk about Schäuble’s old dream — that German reunification would be a harbinger of European unity, a step on the road to a United States of Europe. That seems hopelessly out of reach in these days of Brexit, the gilets jaunes in France, Lega and the Five Star Movement in Italy.

Some blame Schäuble himself for that. He was, after all, the architect of austerity, a fiscal hawk whose policy prescriptions during the euro crisis caused untold hardship for millions of ordinary people, or so his critics say. He became a hate figure, especially in Greece. Posters in Athens in 2015 depicted him with a Hitler moustache below the words: “Wanted — for mass poverty and devastation”.

Schäuble rejects the criticism that austerity caused the rise of populism. “Higher spending doesn’t lead to greater contentment,” he says. The root cause lies in mass immigration, and the insecurities it has unleashed. “What European country doesn’t have this problem?” he asks. “Even Sweden. The poster child of openness and the willingness to help.”

But what of the accusation that he didn’t care enough about the suffering of the southern Europeans? Austerity divided the EU and spawned a real animus against Schäuble. I ask him how that makes him feel now. “Well I’m sad, because I played a part in all of that,” he says, wistfully. “And I think about how we could have done it differently.”

I glance at the menu — simple German classics with a contemporary twist. I’m drawn to the starters, such as Oldenburg duck pâté and the Müritz smoked trout. But true to his somewhat abstemious reputation, Schäuble has no interest in these and zeroes in on the entrées. He chooses Käfer’s signature veal meatballs, a Berlin classic. I go for the Arctic char and pumpkin.

Schäuble switches seamlessly back to the eurozone crisis. The original mistake was in trying to create a common currency without a “common economic, employment and social policy” for all eurozone member states. The fathers of the euro had decided that if they waited for political union to happen first they’d wait forever, he says.

Yet the prospects for greater political union are now worse than they have been in years. “The construction of the EU has proven to be questionable,” he says. “We should have taken the bigger steps towards integration earlier on, and now, because we can’t convince the member states to take them, they are unachievable.”

Greece was a particularly thorny problem. It should never have been admitted to the euro club in the first place, Schäuble says. But when its debt crisis first blew up, it should have taken a 10-year “timeout” from the eurozone — an idea he first floated with Giorgos Papakonstantinou, his Greek counterpart between 2009 and 2011. “I told him you need to be able to devalue your currency, you’re not competitive,” he says. The reforms required to repair the Greek economy were going to be “hard to achieve in a democracy”. “That’s why you need to leave the euro for a certain period. But everyone said there was no chance of that.”

The idea didn’t go away, though. Schäuble pushed for a temporary “Grexit” in 2015, during another round of the debt crisis. But Merkel and the other EU heads of government nixed the idea. He now reveals he thought about resigning over the issue. “On the morning the decision was made, [Merkel] said to me: ‘You’ll carry on?’ . . . But that was one of the instances where we were very close [to my stepping down].”

It is an extraordinary revelation, one that highlights just how rocky his relationship with Merkel has been over the years. Schäuble has been at her side from the start, an éminence grise who has helped to resolve many of the periodic crises of her 13 years as chancellor. But it was never plain sailing.

“There were a few really bad conflicts where she knew too that we were on the edge and I would have gone,” he says. “I always had to weigh up whether to go along with things, even though I knew it was the wrong thing to do, as was the case with Greece, or whether I should go.” But his sense of duty prevailed. “We didn’t always agree — but I was always loyal.”

That might have been the case when he was a serving minister, but since becoming speaker of parliament in late 2017 he has increasingly distanced himself from Merkel. Last year, when she announced she would not seek re-election as leader of the Christian Democratic Union, the party that has governed Germany for 50 of the past 70 years, Schäuble openly backed a candidate described by the Berlin press as the “anti-Merkel”. Friedrich Merz, a millionaire corporate lawyer who is the chairman of BlackRock Germany, had once led the CDU’s parliamentary group but lost out to Merkel in a power struggle in 2002, quitting politics a few years later. He has long been seen as one of the chancellor’s fiercest conservative critics — and is a good friend of Schäuble’s.

Ultimately, in a nail-biting election last December, Merkel’s favoured candidate, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, narrowly beat Merz. The woman universally known as “AKK” is in pole position to succeed Merkel as chancellor when her fourth and final term ends in 2021.

I ask Schäuble if it’s true that he had once again waged a battle against Merkel and once again lost. “I never went to war against Ms Merkel,” he says. “Everybody says that if I’m for Merz then I’m against Merkel. Why is that so? That’s nonsense.”

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