12 April, 2018| Polling

Public opposed to military action in Syria

Public more opposed than supportive of military action in Syria, but overwhelmingly back a no fly zone.

Surveys from pollsters YouGov and Sky Data paint a grim picture for those advocating military action in Syria.

Though both polls show a significant number of Britons are at present undecided, suggesting there’s ground to be gained by either side in the weeks and months ahead, much of those with an opinion are opposed to military action in response to the alleged chemical attack by the Syrian regime.

Sky Data has opposition to intervention with a lead of just 1pt, at 37 per cent and support at 36 per cent, while YouGov (asking with regards to the launching of cruise missiles) has opposition at 43 per cent and support at 22 per cent. The share of those undecided or with no opinion stands at 27 per cent and 34 per cent respectively.

It isn’t particularly notable that there is a 14pt disparity between the pollsters on support for military action, for Sky Data asks regarding generic military action and YouGov asks on the particular action of launching cruise missiles.
What is worth noting, however, is that Sky Data asked a second question. The question starts with a repeat of the first, as mentioned earlier…

… but also includes a prompt for the potential of conflict with Russia as a consequence of UK military intervention:

Support ‘falls’, as it were, from 36 per cent to 28 per cent.

Further findings by the pollsters include:

Britons overwhelmingly back a no fly zone over Syria:
Support: 60 per cent; Oppose: 9 per cent (YouGov).

Sending troops “to protect civilians” holds similar support to launching cruise missiles:
Support: 22 per cent; Oppose: 50 per cent (YouGov).

Sending troops to overthrow the Syrian regime has majority opposition:
Support: 17 per cent; Oppose: 51 per cent (YouGov).