Thursday, July 14, 2005

Muslim countries' attitudes changing (for the better)

This seems like a good trend:

Osama bin Laden's standing has dropped significantly in some key Muslim countries, while support for suicide bombings and other acts of violence has "declined dramatically," according to a new survey released today.

In a striking finding, predominantly Muslim populations in a sampling of six North African, Middle East and Asian countries are also as alarmed as Western nations about Islamic extremism, which is now seen as a threat in their own nations too, the poll found. . . .

Compared with previous surveys, the new poll also found growing majorities or pluralities of Muslims surveyed now say democracy can work in their countries and is not just a political system for the West. Support for democracy was in the 80 percent range in Indonesia, Jordan, Lebanon and Morocco and the highest score at 43 percent in Pakistan and 48 percent in Turkey, where significant numbers were unsure.

"They are not just paying lip service. They are saying they specifically want a fair judiciary, freedom of expression and more than one party to participate in elections. It wasn't just a vague concept," said Andrew Kohut, president of the Pew Research Center and director of the project. "U.S. and Western ideas about democracy have been globalized and are in the Muslim world."
Whole thing here.

[Hat tip: Instapundit]


Anonymous said...

I can't say I believe it. But I can say that I would be thrilled if it were true.

marco said...

I know what you mean. But at the same time Pew International is the gold standard for international opinion polls, so I think there is reason to be optimistic.

Adam Scavone said...

still have some work to do says NR..

Dennis said...

A lot of work to do. It's good news, but the bad news is that it was ever so high in the first place - especially support for suicide bombing. I think the numbers (albeit polls are only polls) show that, if its just a fringe of the population that supports these activities, its a pretty large fringe.

We have work set out for us.