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Message Afghan views of impact of various countries

Published on December 15th, 2010 | by Ali Gharib


How Afghans View Iran

Here’s something I missed from the first week of December: a poll in Afghanistan commissioned by ABC News, the Washington Post, the BBC, ARD-German TV.

If you look at the first page of Langer Research’s analysis (the group organized and analyzed the survey for the news organizations), it’s clear the United States’ and NATO’s stock is falling among Afghans, depending on the region and issue being polled.

But, digging deeper into the actual survey questions, there’s an interesting sub-text on how Afghans feel about Iranians. Despite the sectarian and ethnic divides, Iran actually does alright with Afghans. Maybe not quite as well as the United States, but considering the discrepancies in resources being poured into the country, not that far behind either.

Note that when you look at these numbers, the implication is not at that Iran is seen as some savior while the U.S. is hated. As I said, it’s the remarkable similarity of the two countries’ numbers that is worthy of comment (though the meaning is certainly up for debate).

Here are some more favorable/unfavorable numbers, as the poll has tracked over time. First Iran, followed by the numbers for the U.S.:

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About the Author


Ali Gharib is a New York-based journalist on U.S. foreign policy with a focus on the Middle East and Central Asia. His work has appeared at Inter Press Service, where he was the Deputy Washington Bureau Chief; the Buffalo Beast; Huffington Post; Mondoweiss; Right Web; and Alternet. He holds a Master's degree in Philosophy and Public Policy from the London School of Economics and Political Science. A proud Iranian-American and fluent Farsi speaker, Ali was born in California and raised in D.C.

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