Poll shows overwhelming opposition to Iran acquiring nuclear weapons
A new poll commissioned by The Israel Project (TIP) of respondents in France, Germany and Sweden shows overwhelming opposition to Iran acquiring nuclear weapons. Fully 80 percent of respondents in France, 83 percent in Germany and 90 percent in Sweden believe that the international community should prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. France is primarily concerned by Iranian missiles that may be able to reach Europe or the United States, Sweden by Iran's arming and funding of terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah, and Germany by the Iranian government's statements that it wants to wipe Israel off the map.
A two-thirds majority in Germany support the EU developing even stronger sanctions on top of the recently passed UN round. France rises to 70 percent support and Sweden even higher to 78 percent support for additional stronger sanctions. However, few in Germany (23 percent) and Sweden (28 percent) think the sanctions will work. France polled higher, with 53 percent thinking it is likely or somewhat likely that sanctions and diplomacy can prevent Iran's development of nuclear capabilities.
Majorities in France and Germany support further expanding international sanctions, including halting the purchase of oil from Iran, even if it increases the cost of fuel in their countries, and Sweden supports the same initiative at 71 percent. A majority in each country also supports European countries ending subsidies for companies doing business with Iran.
Stan Greenberg, CEO of Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, who conducted the surveys said, "These poll results provide strong confirmation for U.N. sanctions against Iran's nuclear program. The publics in these countries are fearful of a Middle East arms race and threats to wipe Israel off the map. As a result, these European countries are ready for even stronger sanctions if necessary."
When asked to rate their feelings on a scale of one to 100, in which one meant "very cold or unfavorable" and 100 meant "warm/very favorable," Iran received a "very cold/unfavorable" rating from 61 percent in France (average rating: 27.9), 72 percent in Germany (average rating: 26.3), and 57 percent in Sweden (average rating: 33.1). Hamas also received very cold ratings from 57 percent in France (average rating: 27.2), 73 percent in Germany (average rating: 17.8 ) and 62 percent in Sweden (average rating: 25.5).
The poll of 1,009 French respondents, 1,003 German respondents and 511 Swedish respondents was conducted by telephone in July 2010 for The Israel Project by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research in conjunction with Neil Newhouse of Public Opinion Strategies. The margin of error is +/- 3.1 percent in France and Germany and 4.5 +/- percent in Sweden.