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How the world views Obama and America's policies

Obama has certainly squandered his own standing - remember the hopes, misplaced as they might have been? - pinned on the man when he ran for office and succeeded.    And his policies since assuming office have done little to gain support for America's policies.   So, how does the world view the man?   Pew Research Centre has surveyed the subject and reports:

"Global approval of President Barack Obama’s policies has declined significantly since he first took office, while overall confidence in him and attitudes toward the U.S. have slipped modestly as a consequence.

Europeans and Japanese remain largely confident in Obama, albeit somewhat less so than in 2009, while Muslim publics remain largely critical. A similar pattern characterizes overall ratings for the U.S. – in the EU and Japan, views are still positive, but the U.S. remains unpopular in nations such as Egypt, Jordan, Turkey and Pakistan.

Meanwhile, support for Obama has waned significantly in China. Since 2009, confidence in the American president has declined by 24 percentage points and approval of his policies has fallen 30 points. Mexicans have also soured on his policies, and many fewer express confidence in him today.

The Obama era has coincided with major changes in international perceptions of American power – especially U.S. economic power. The global financial crisis and the steady rise of China have led many to declare China the world’s economic leader, and this trend is especially strong among some of America’s major European allies. Today, solid majorities in Germany (62%), Britain (58%), France (57%) and Spain (57%) name China as the world’s top economic power.

Even though many think American economic clout is in relative decline, publics around the world continue to worry about how the U.S. uses its power – in particular its military power – in international affairs.

There remains a widespread perception that the U.S. acts unilaterally and does not consider the interests of other countries. In predominantly Muslim nations, American anti-terrorism efforts are still widely unpopular. And in nearly all countries, there is considerable opposition to a major component of the Obama administration’s anti-terrorism policy: drone strikes. In 17 of 20 countries, more than half disapprove of U.S. drone attacks targeting extremist leaders and groups in nations such as Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.

Americans are the clear outliers on this issue – 62% approve of the drone campaign, including most Republicans (74%), independents (60%) and Democrats (58%)."

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