Americans OK With Leaving Syria and Afghanistan | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

Americans OK With Leaving Syria and Afghanistan

The long life of the Afghan war makes it hard to remember how popular it was when it began. As the fighting began, 80 percent of America supported it. Nobody in Congress except Rep. Barbara Lee (D–Calif.) was prescient enough to vote against the Authorization for Use of Military Force and its open-ended-enough-to-attack-a-dozen-more-countries wording. Not until 2014 did a majority of Americans begin to regret that the war ever started.

Now some polls suggest it's nearly as unpopular as the wildly unpopular ill-fated war in Iraq.

This week YouGov and the Charles Koch Institute (full disclosure: I was a journalism fellow at the institute last year) released a poll that suggests widespread support for President Donald Trump's stated goal of drawing down the troops in Afghanistan and withdrawing entirely from Syria. According to the survey, 51 percent of Americans generally approve of removing all troops from Afghanistan "within a year." A majority 46 percent don't think the U.S. knows what its goal is in Afghanistan, and 40 percent don't think the war there has a purpose vital to national security. Somewhat dismayingly, at least for those few of us who care about Congress' constitutional role in making war, respondents were more likely to back an Afghanistan withdrawal if the question was phrased as a presidential decision, with "strong" or "somewhat" support for an exit leaping to 51 percent.