Professor Shibley Telhami writes about newly released poll results in an article entitled, "Here's What Americans Want Trump to do in the Middle East" published in Politico Magazine.
"Americans continue to see fighting the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, as the top issue facing the United States in the Middle East. Asked to choose the top two issues facing the United States in the Middle East, 74 percent chose fighting ISIS, 48 percent ending the Syrian conflict, 24 percent achieving Israeli-Palestinian peace, 23 percent identifying a way to build a coalition to confront Iran, 18 percent choose securing favorable trade deals, and only 6 percent identify ending the conflict in Yemen.
Ending the Syrian conflict surpasses the Israeli-Palestinian conflict among the public’s perceived priorities, perhaps because they see it as directly linked to their top priority of defeating ISIS.
Five weeks after the U.S. strike on a Syrian air force base in response to evidence that Assad had used chemical weapons against his people, Americans see little change in the Syrian conflict: Overall, 72 percent said there was no change, including 64 percent of Republicans, 77 percent of Democrats, and 79 percent of Independents. Only 15 percent said it changed for the better, including 28 percent of Republicans, 5 percent of Democrats and 7 percent of Independents. In addition, 12 percent said the U.S. strikes had changed the Syrian conflict for the worse, including 6 percent of Republicans, 17 percent of Democrats, and 11 percent of Independents."