Vladimir Putin: not about to win any popularity contests
By Dwight L. Schwab
Russian President Vladimir Putin is not going to make most popular politician anytime soon. According to Pew Research Monday, people around the world outside Russia hold that nation in low regard, and most do not have confidence that Vladimir Putin will do the right thing in world affairs.
The survey included 40 nations across the world including 45,000 respondents. A majority of those polled had an unfavorable opinion of Russia in 19 countries.
In summation, there were far more unfavorable comments than favorable. However, there was not a majority expressing unfavorable opinions. There are many examples that can be used to illustrate the general mood of the respondents. One prime example is Pakistan where 43 percent had an unfavorable opinion and 12 percent had a favorable view. The rest had no opinion.
Only three nations had a favorable view of Russia and two are of no surprise. Vietnam had 75 percent approving while China came in at 51 percent. Ghana joined the two obvious favorable opinions at 56 percent.
Meanwhile, the strongest response in the negative came out of Poland and Jordan at 80 percent unfavorable. Pew observed, “The former is a legacy of a long history of bilateral tensions. Public opinion in Jordan may be influenced by Moscow’s current support for the regime of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, Jordan’s neighbor and the source of hundreds of thousands of refugees in Jordan.”
Strong anti-Russian sentiment exists in Israel at 74 percent, Japan 73 percent and Germany and France at 70 percent. The United States posted a negative 67 percent. Those with a favorable view were a mere 22 percent. It should be noted that as recently as 2011 the favorable rating had been 49 percent.