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27 Jan, 2012 07:58

Americans oppose war: But does govt care?

With harsh US rhetoric and tensions around Iran’s nuclear program snowballing by the hour, American polls nonetheless show that most Americans think a war with Tehran would be a grave mistake. But do the leaders care?

Despite Iran’s recent consent to return to negotiations over its atomic work, the Obama administration says war with Tehran is still on the table. Even harsher statements come from some of Washington’s hawks like Newt Gingrich, who spoke of breaking the Iranian regime within a year.The calls however appear to find little support with the ordinary people. Online and telephone surveys by one of the country’s online companion polls show the majority of Americans do not back the government’s talk of war against Iran.The residents of one American city went even further and took the matter to their City Council. The legislative body of Charlottesville in Virginia passed a resolution, believed to be a first in the country, opposing the launching of a war on Iran, as well as calling for an end to current ground and drone wars engaged in by the US. “The popular will has always been against wars, unless pushed and dragged by a very manipulative propaganda,” David Swanson, co-author of the resolution told RT. “And they have been trying – those who want war on Iran – have been trying unsuccessfully for years to get the American people onboard”. RT’s Gayane Chichakyan went out on the streets of Washington to see how many people she met who want the US to attack Iran. The result was – just one, out of more than a dozen. And it’s not just ordinary US people, but many experts in the security field, who warn against starting a war with Iran. One of these is a former acting director of the CIA.“People keep saying that the military option is still on the table. I think it would be a very bad option… One of the big problems with Iran is that if you get into an open confrontation, a military confrontation, you risk a cycle of retaliation and response with great difficulty seeing where the end point is,” John E. McLaughlin says. A natural question here is, how can Washington continue talking war, with so many Americans against it?  “I have a hard time thinking of any example of any issue on which the conduct of our government in Washington corresponds with majority opinion. War is not some kind of exception. The public is against bailouts for bankers, the public is against subsidies for energy companies, the public is against wars, the public is against just about every decision made on important issues in Washington,” David Swanson laments to RT. But does the government care? Many sense that the rift between what Americans want, and what the leaders do in the name of the American people, is not narrowing. In fact, it is getting wider.