Newly released polling numbers from a Gallup survey conducted in Afghanistan in June 2009 indicate that as late as that date—almost eight years after U.S. forces occupied that country and overthrew its Muslim fundamentalist Taliban regime--more Afghans believed their country would be best governed by a strong man as opposed to a democracy.
“When asked about the ‘best way to govern’ their nation, 31% of Afghans said they preferred having a strong leader who does not need to bother with parliament and elections,” said a Gallup report published Nov. 28, 2010 and posted online on Dec. 1.
“Twenty-two percent said that experts, not the government, should make decisions according to what they think is best for the country,” said the report. “Yet more than one-quarter of Afghans (27%) said having a democratic political system was the best way to govern
The Nov. 28 Gallup report also said that another survey of 1,000 Afghans conducted in October 2009 indicated that many people in the country were not satisfied with the way democracy was working there.
“Furthermore, few Afghans said that they were satisfied with the way democracy was working in their country,” said the
By contrast, a majority of Afghans—55%--told
President Obama was meeting Tuesday with his national security team to discuss the administration’s strategic review of the situation in
“Well, we have progress and we have challenges,” White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs said at Monday’s press briefing. “That is something that is talked much about when we go into these meetings in the Situation Room. Obviously there will be another meeting before the review is released, so I don't want to get ahead of where we are on that. But I think the President feels confident that we're on track on where we should be and that we can certainly meet our commitments to begin a conditions-based drawdown of our forces next July.”
(To see Gallup's full report “Measuring the State of Muslim-West Relations: Assessing the ‘New Beginning,” click here and then click the hyperlinked title of the report in Gallup's analysis.)