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[casi] US Media manipulation: American citizens do oppose the war

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  Ever wonder why soooooo manypeople put sooooooo much faith in U.S. opinion polls? Not only are 
the polls themselves subject to manipulation, but so are the reports of their findings. American 
media are deceiving the American readers. The following from Counterpunch:

AP Misrepresents Poll in Headline

Our friend Chris Kromm, director of the Institute for Southern Studies, examined a March 15 AP news 
story on a poll on pro and anti war sentiment among We the People and promptly dashed off the 
following letter to AP:

March 15, 2003
Dear Associated Press, Today, the AP filed a story with the following headline: "Poll: Bush Has 
Solid Support for War." Many readers, of course, will read only that headline, taking with it the 
message that the U.S. public overwhelmingly supports the Bush Administration's drive to war in 
Iraq. However, after wading through reporter Will Lester's spin to actually read the poll results, 
one finds the exact opposite to be true.

Buried in paragraph six, we find the relevant numbers: "The poll found that about half of adults, 
47 percent, say they support military action to remove Iraqi President Saddam Hussein from power 
and disarm Iraq, even without the support of the United Nations Security Council. Almost four in 
10, 37 percent, said the United States should do that only with full support of the Security 
Council; 13 percent said the United States should not take military action even if the Security 
Council agrees."

President Bush has resolutely stated he will prosecute a war against Iraq without the "full support 
of the [UN] Security Council" -- and appears poised to do so.

This means that fully 50% (37% + 13%) of those polled OPPOSE the Bush Administration policy on 
Iraq, as compared to 47% in favor.

Why is the Associated Press afraid to honestly report the poll's findings? What can justify such an 
astonishingly misleading headline, followed by reporting from Mr. Lester with a similarly suspect 
message -- when the actual facts presented in the article point to precisely the opposite 

I await an explanation, and hopefully, a very public correction.


Chris Kromm
Institute for Southern Studies
Durham, NC

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