Muslim Americans: No Signs of Growth in Alienation or Support for Extremism

Mainstream and Moderate Attitudes

As the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks approaches, a comprehensive public opinion survey finds no indication of increased alienation or anger among Muslim Americans in response to concerns about home-grown Islamic terrorists, controversies about the building of mosques and other pressures that have been brought to bear on this high-profile minority group in recent years. There also is no evidence of rising support for Islamic extremism among Muslim Americans.

On the contrary, as found in the Pew Research Center’s 2007 survey, Muslims in the United States continue to reject extremism by much larger margins than most Muslim publics surveyed this year by the Pew Global Attitudes Project. And majorities of Muslim Americans express concern about the possible rise of Islamic extremism, both here and abroad.

A significant minority (21%) of Muslim Americans say there is a great deal (6%) or a fair amount (15%) of support for extremism in the Muslim American community. That is far below the proportion of the general public that sees at least a fair amount of support for extremism among U.S. Muslims (40%). And while about a quarter of the public (24%) thinks that Muslim support for extremism is increasing, just 4% of Muslims agree.

Many Muslims fault their own leaders for failing to challenge Islamic extremists. Nearly half (48%) say that Muslim leaders in the United States have not done enough to speak out against Islamic extremists; only about a third (34%) say Muslim leaders have done enough in challenging extremists. At the same time, 68% say that Muslim Americans themselves are cooperating as much as they should with law enforcement.

Europeans Back French Veil Ban, Americans opposed

While most Americans oppose banning face-covering Islamic veils, most western Europeans questioned in a new global poll say the garments should be forbidden — especially in France, where a ban may soon be a reality.

A survey by the Pew Global Attitudes Project found that an overwhelming 82 percent of French respondents support a ban. The poll found 71 percent support in Germany, 62 percent in Britain and 59 percent in Spain. In the United States, 28 percent of those questioned said they would approve a ban.

The pollsters questioned more than 4,000 people by telephone in the five countries as part of a larger poll on global attitudes conducted in April and May. The pollsters said there was no variation along gender lines in any of the five countries and little variation depending on income and education levels.

Global Poll: Muslims Disappointed by Obama

By Alan Fram

Muslims around the globe remain uneasy about the U.S. and are increasingly disenchanted with President Barack Obama, according to a poll that suggests his drive to improve relations with the Muslim world has had little impact. Even so, the U.S. image is holding strong in many other countries and continues to be far better than it was during much of George W. Bush’s presidency, according to the survey by the Pew Global Attitudes Project.

New Poll Finds Muslim Americans Are Down on Obama’s Foreign Policy

Background: More than a year after Barack Obama’s landmark speech in Cairo, where he laid out his vision to repair relations with the Muslim world, Muslims are growing weary and disillusioned with the U.S. president and his international policies, according to a new survey by the Pew Global Attitudes Project.

Summary: Publics of largely Muslim countries continue to hold overwhelmingly negative views of the U.S. In both Turkey and Pakistan – where ratings for the U.S. have been consistently low in recent years – only 17% hold a positive opinion. Indeed, the new poll finds opinion of the U.S. slipping in some Muslim countries where opinion had edged up in 2009. In Egypt, America’s favorability rating dropped from 27% to 17% – the lowest percentage observed in any of the Pew Global Attitudes surveys conducted in that country since 2006. The modest levels of confidence and approval observed in 2009 have slipped markedly. In Egypt the percentage of Muslims expressing confidence in Obama fell from 41% to 31% and in Turkey from 33% to 23%. Last year only 13% of Pakistani Muslims expressed confidence in Obama, but this year even fewer (8%) hold this view. And while views of Obama are still more positive than were attitudes toward President Bush among most Muslim publics, significant percentages continue to worry that the U.S. could become a military threat to their country.

Anti-Muslim sentiments on rise in Europe, two out of five Canadians also feel that way

Negative sentiments against Muslims and Jews are on the rise in “old Europe” more than anywhere else around the world today, a survey released in September by the Pew Research Center’s Pew Global Attitudes Project has shown. In contrast, negative attitudes towards Christians in Europe are “less common than negative ratings of Muslims or Jews,” the Pew survey said. Nonetheless, it noted that negative attitudes towards Christians are on the rise in a few countries, particularly in Turkey – to 72 per cent from 52 per cent in 2004. Meanwhile, a recent Leger Marketing poll has shown that nearly two out of five Canadians hold anti-Muslim sentiments. The Leger survey, commissioned by the Association for Canadian Studies, shows that “more needs to be done to combat discrimination and anti-Muslim sentiment,” according to the Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN). Anti-Jewish sentiment also increased slightly, with the number of Canadians offering favourable views of Jews dropping to 73 per cent this year from 78 per cent. The poll, conducted among 1,500 respondents across the country, showed an increase in the number of Canadians with an unfavourable view of Muslims – to 36 per cent this year from 27 per cent. (Respondents were asked whether they had a favourable or unfavourable view of Muslims). Marites N. Sison reports.

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Anti-Muslim sentiments on rise in Europe, two out of five Canadians also feel that way

Negative sentiments against Muslims and Jews are on the rise in old Europe more than anywhere else around the world today, a survey released in September by the Pew Research Center’s Pew Global Attitudes Project has shown. In contrast, negative attitudes towards Christians in Europe are less common than negative ratings of Muslims or Jews, the Pew survey said. Nonetheless, it noted that negative attitudes towards Christians are on the rise in a few countries, particularly in Turkey – to 72 per cent from 52 per cent in 2004. Meanwhile, a recent Leger Marketing poll has shown that nearly two out of five Canadians hold anti-Muslim sentiments. The Leger survey, commissioned by the Association for Canadian Studies, shows that more needs to be done to combat discrimination and anti-Muslim sentiment, according to the Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN). Anti-Jewish sentiment also increased slightly, with the number of Canadians offering favourable views of Jews dropping to 73 per cent this year from 78 per cent. The poll, conducted among 1,500 respondents across the country, showed an increase in the number of Canadians with an unfavourable view of Muslims – to 36 per cent this year from 27 per cent. (Respondents were asked whether they had a favourable or unfavourable view of Muslims). Marites N. Sison reports.