There is strong public sentiment against the United States intervening in the fighting in Syria between government forces and anti-government groups. Nearly two-thirds (64%) say the United States does not have a responsibility to do something about the conflict in Syria, while 25% say the U.S. does have a responsibility to intervene, according to a survey by Pew Research Center.
Opposition to US involvement in Syria crosses party lines. Majorities of Republicans and Democrats say the US does not have a responsibility to get involved, and reject airstrikes or the shipment of arms to anti-government forces. Fully 62% oppose bombing the Syrian military and 63% are against sending arms and military supplies to those fighting the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
Current views about possible US involvement in Syria are similar to opinions about the prospect of US military action in Libya last year, shortly before the U.S. and its allies launched air strikes in support of anti-government rebels.
A year ago, 63% said the US did not have a responsibility to do something about fighting in Libya; a nearly identical percentage (64%) now says the US does not have a responsibility to act in Syria. In the current survey, 68% of Republicans and 63% of Democrats say the US does not have a responsibility in this area.
Last year, prior to the allied military mission in Libya, 69% opposed arming anti-government rebels and 77% opposed bombing Libyan air defenses.
After the allies launched air strikes against Libya last year, there was modest public support for the military operation; 47% said the airstrikes were the right decision while 36% said they were the wrong decision. In September, even after the rebels took control of Tripoli and Gadhafi went into hiding, fewer than half (44%) said that the airstrikes were the right decision.