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Poll: More Americans willing to send ground troops to Kosovo

April 8, 1999
Web posted at: 1:01 a.m. EDT (0501 GMT)

(AllPolitics, April 7) -- Public support is growing for sending U.S. ground troops to Kosovo once it is clear that current NATO airstrikes are not effective.

But most Americans do not favor sending ground troops into combat situations immediately and do not think that NATO's goals are worth many American casualties in a lengthy military action.

At the same time, Bill Clinton's approval rating has dropped amid the growing belief that his administration does not have a well-thought-out plan in Kosovo and concerns that he intends to send ground troops into a war there despite his public statements.

About three-quarters of the public believe that the United States will eventually send ground troops into Kosovo and about half think that ground troops are necessary to achieve U.S. objectives there.

Forty seven percent favor sending U.S. ground troops if the current NATO air and missile strikes are not effective in achieving U.S. goals in Kosovo. But slightly fewer Americans, 41 percent, favor sending ground troops to serve in a combat situation right now, and 49 percent say they would not be willing to have a son go into combat in Kosovo.

Fifty percent believe that the NATO goals of having the Serbs withdraw all of their forces from Kosovo and let the refugees return home accompanied by NATO peacekeeping troops is worth a few American casualties in a limited military action. But only 14 percent believe those goals are worth many American casualties in a lengthy military action.

The survey of 1,055 Adult Americans was conducted April 6-7, 1999 and has a margin of sampling error of +/- three percentage points.

Would you favor or oppose sending U.S. ground troops to Yugoslavia if NATO airstrikes are not effective?

 NowMarch 30-31March 25
Favor47%39%31%
Oppose47%57%65%

Would you favor or oppose sending U.S. ground troops into combat right now?

Favor41%
Oppose54%

Do you think NATO's objectives of forcing Yugoslav troops from Kosovo and returning ethnic Albanian refugees to the region are worth a few U.S. casualties in a limited military actions?

Yes50%
No42%

Do you think NATO objectives are worth many U.S. casualties in a lengthy military action?

Yes14%
No80%

If you had a son of military age, would you be willing to send him into combat in Kosovo?

Yes46%
No49%

Do you think U.S. ground troops will be sent to Kosovo?

Yes78%
No15%

What military action do you think is necessary for U.S. to achieve its objectives in Kosovo?

Ground troops51%
Air attacks only25%
No military action15%

Do you favor or oppose U.S. participation in NATO airstrikes on Yugoslavia?

Favor58%
Oppose36%

Do you think the current NATO action has been successful?

Yes37%
No41%

Do you think NATO's military action will be successful when it is completed?

Yes50%
No35%

Do you approve or disapprove of the way Bill Clinton is handling his job as president?

Now59%
March 19-2135%

Do you approve of how President Clinton is handling international affairs?

Now55%
March 19-2160%

Do you approve or disapprove of the way President Clinton is handling the situation in Kosovo?

Approve58%
Disapprove35%

Does President Clinton have a clear policy on Kosovo?

Yes39%
No50%

RELATED STORIES

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Senate likely to table Kosovo resolution (5-3-99)

Poll: Congress should have authority over U.S. involvement in Kosovo (5-3-99)

Jackson revels in winning release of captive GIs (5-3-99)

Seventeen congressmen file suit against Clinton to end war (4-30-99)


ROLL CALL

Senate roll call tabling Kosovo resolution


TRANSCRIPTS

President Bill Clinton speaks on Kosovo (4-28-99)


VIDEO

John King reports: Clinton says Yugoslav initiatives fall short, but still hoping for diplomatic breakthrough (5-4-99) video Windows Media: 28K | 80K

Candy Crowley reports: War widening bill debated in Congress (5-4-99) video Windows Media: 28K | 80K


INTERACTIVE

Presidential hopefuls stake out positions on NATO airstrikes


TIME THIS WEEK

Jesse Jackson's trip to Belgrade produces a dramatic announcement. Will it help or undermine the allied campaign?


CNN IN-DEPTH:

Strike on Yugoslavia

The Conflict:

  • From TIME: The Kosovo Catastrophe: In Pictures
  • Kosovo Primer

    Message Board:

  • Your thoughts...



  • MORE STORIES:

    Thursday, April 8, 1999

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