Number of Americans who believe China is greatest threat to the U.S. has doubled: poll

Number of Americans who believe China is greatest threat to the U.S. has doubled: poll
AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein
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China has overtaken Russia as the greatest threat to the United States, according to 45 per cent of Americans surveyed in a new Gallup poll, more than double the percentage of those who said so in 2020.

Last year, Americans were equally as likely to say that either China or Russia posed the greatest threat to the United States. The new figures follow China’s role in being the place of origin of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which originated in the city of Wuhan.

The poll conducted between Feb. 3 to 18 found that 45 per cent of Americans view China as the greatest threat to the U.S., in contrast to 22 per cent of those polled a year ago. 26 per cent of Americans view Russia as the country’s greatest threat, a small increase from 23 per cent in 2020. 

Other countries on the list include North Korea and Iran, which stand at 9 per cent and 4 per cent, respectively. 1 per cent of responders each found Afghanistan, Mexico and even the United States itself to be the nation’s greatest threat. 

The poll’s findings see favourable views of China falling for the second year straight, to a historic low of 20 per cent. 

In previous years more Americans found North Korea to be a threat due to the aggressive rhetoric of its leader, Kim Jong Un, who has thus far proven to be nothing more than a small barking dog.

China previously tied for number one as the greatest threat to America in 2014 alongside Russia, which also topped the list in 2019 and 2020. 

Many Americans now see China as a major economic threat, with 50 per cent regarding the country as the world’s dominant economic force. The number is slightly decreased from 2013, when 53 per cent of Americans described China in the same light. Despite this fact, more Americans view the Chinese economic threat as critical, with 63 per cent of responders expressing extreme concern about the rise of the communist country. 

Similar polls conducted by Pew Research and others found similar negative attitudes towards China in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, China’s aggressive actions in Hong Kong and towards Taiwan and the ongoing genocide of the Uyghur population in Xinjiang.

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  • By David Menzies

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