Men Express Pride in Iraq War, Women Favor Compassion, Anger
Men and women in the United States feel differently about their
country's invasion of Iraq as the fourth anniversary approaches in
March 2007. According to a poll conducted by Associated
Press-Ipsos, findings suggested that not only were men more
likely to feel proud of the invasion's success to date, women were more
likely to feel worried about the outcome, compassionate towards lives
lost, and personally angry and or tired of the war itself.
Differences of feelings between the genders were no surprise to Duke
University political scientist Christopher Gelpi who told the
Associated Press that women by nature expressed an emotional response
to causalities that men typically ignore.
There were also differences of opinion between those not affected by a
death toll, versus families, friends, and acquaintances in the United
States who knew of or knew someone who lost a loved one in Iraq.
Seventeen percent of those polled
admitted they knew of someone who had been killed while serving in
Iraq. Nearly half of those who were touched by death felt it was right
to criticize the war, however two-thirds of those who were not
personally touched by a casualty felt opposition was appropriate.
Overall, 63 percent support
those who criticize the invasion, with only 34 percent saying it is
wrong to criticize President Bush or the war in Iraq.
While the United States
military has been forthright about casualties since March 2003, there
is no true count of Iraq civilian deaths as the Pentagon stated early
on in the war that a count (of Iraqi deaths) would not be kept.
The midpoint figure of which residents of the United States estimated
--off the top of their heads-- the military death count as of
February was at 2,974. Military casualties from the United States
number more than 3,154 as of 24 February 2007 with more than 23,417
wounded (and more than 32,544 medical air transported,) according to
the Iraq Coalition Causalities website.
For all participating nations in the Iraq war military deaths top
3,410. It is only estimated that the body count in Iraq fits a range
between 56,800 and 62,600. However the United Nations had confirmed
that at least 34,000 deaths occurred in year 2006 alone, and a slightly
smaller figure was estimated for 2005. Other groups have estimated the
death count to be as high as 100,000.
However, those in the United States do not believe the death count in
Iraq could be very high. According to those polled the median number of
deaths in Iraq would hold at 9,890. Some 77 percent said the number of
deaths was unacceptable across the board for both the United States and
Iraq. Two-thirds stated they 'felt upset' to hear of a soldier’s death,
but the others wrote a military death off as simply a war game.
When those polled were prodded with words to describe their feelings
about Iraq, 81 percent chose the word worried. Seventy-four percent
chose compassionate, 62 percent chose angry, 61 percent chose tired, 51
percent chose hopeful, 38 percent chose proud, and 27 percent chose
Despite the worry, the majority supported sending more troops (63
percent in February versus 70 percent in January.)
A solid 37 percent said that President George W Bush made the right
decision to invade Iraq in March 2003, and 61 percent said it was a
mistake. These figures have only changed marginally since June 2005 (42
percent said it was right, 53 percent said it was a mistake.)
Is the Iraq war a hopeless cause? More than half (56 percent) said yes,
and 39 percent stated the war was a worthy cause.
However, nearly seven in 10 said they oppose Congress cutting war
funding for Iraq, and 60 percent oppose fighting President Bush on
sending more troops. And yet, those polled said more troops would NOT
stabilize Iraq (64 percent) to 32 percent who said more troops would
help the war.
Citizens of the United States further believe that all Iraqis support
their nation's cause with 66 percent saying that Iraqis are opposed to
those the United States terms to be insurgents. And yet, those polled
--more than 9 in 10-- said the United States military could NOT tell
the difference between an Iraq citizen and an Iraq "insurgent."
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