Back To Listing

Majority of Australians (61%) against sending ground troops to Iraq & Syria

Finding No. 6578 – This special snap SMS Morgan Poll was conducted with a representative cross-section of 973 Australians over the last two days, Thursday November 26, 2015 – Friday November 27, 2015. They were asked “Do you approve or disapprove Australian ground combat troops being sent to fight the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria?” and respondents were then asked “why do you feel that way about Australian ground troops fighting in Iraq & Syria?”
A special snap SMS Morgan Poll shows a majority of Australians (61%) disapprove of Australia sending ground combat troops to fight the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria and 39% approve. This special SMS Morgan Poll was conducted last night (Thursday) with a cross-section of 973 Australians.

A Morgan Gallup Poll conducted in May 1965, near the beginning of the Vietnam War, showed a majority of Australian electors (52%) were in favour of the decision to send 800 Australian troops to South Vietnam compared to 37% that were opposed and 11% were undecided.

Analysis by Voting Preference

Analysing the results by voting preference shows a majority of supporters of all parties against Australia sending ground combat troops to fight the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria.

  • Liberal voters: Disapprove (54%) cf. approve (46%);
  • National voters: Disapprove (59%) cf. approve (41%);
  • ALP voters: Disapprove (70%) cf. approve (30%);
  • Greens voters: Disapprove (77%) cf. approve (23%);
  • Independent/ Others voters: Disapprove (56%) cf. approve (44%).

Analysis by Gender

Analysis by gender shows a slight gender split with a greater majority of women against sending Australian ground combat troops to fight Islamic State in Iraq & Syria:

  • Men: Disapprove (57%) cf. approve (43%);
  • Women: Disapprove (65%) cf. approve (35%).

Analysis by Age

Analysing by age shows younger Australians (under 25) and older Australians (over 50) are the most against sending Australian ground combat troops to fight Islamic State in Iraq & Syria:

  • 18-24yr olds: Disapprove (62%) cf. approve (38%);
  • 25-34yr olds: Disapprove (56%) cf. approve (44%);
  • 35-49yr olds: Disapprove (50%) cf. approve (50%);
  • 50-64yr olds: Disapprove (65%) cf. approve (35%);
  • 65+yr olds: Disapprove (75%) cf. approve (25%).

Analysis by State

Analysing by State shows clear majorities in all Australian States against sending Australian ground troops to fight Islamic State in Iraq & Syria:

  • New South Wales: Disapprove (60%) cf. approve (40%);
  • Victoria: Disapprove (65%) cf. approve (35%);
  • Queensland: Disapprove (57%) cf. approve (43%);
  • Western Australia: Disapprove (57%) cf. approve (43%);
  • South Australia: Disapprove (69%) cf. approve (31%);
  • Tasmania: Disapprove (71%) cf. approve (29%).


Gary Morgan says:

“A clear majority (61%) of Australians are against Australia sending ground combat troops to Iraq & Syria to fight Islamic State while 39% approve of doing so. Majorities of supporters of all major parties are against sending ground combat troops with Greens supporters (77%) most opposed followed by ALP supporters (70%) and National supporters (59%). Liberal supporters are the most evenly divided on the issue with 54% disapproving of sending ground combat troops while 44% of Liberal supporters approve of sending Australian ground combat troops.

“Disapproval of sending ground troops is stronger amongst women (65%) than men (57%), however there is a wide variety of views among different age groups. Those aged 65+ are the most opposed with 75% disapproving (only 25% approving) of Australia sending ground troops – this is the age group most impacted by the Vietnam War (1962-1975). Australians aged 50-64 are also heavily opposed (65% disapprove cf. 35% approve), and those aged 18-24, perhaps the age group most likely to be sent to Iraq & Syria, are also heavily opposed (62% disapprove cf. 38% approve).

“In comparison it is those aged 25-49 that are evenly divided on the issue of sending Australian ground troops. 50% of 35-49yr olds approve cf. 50% disapprove whilst 25-34yr olds are slightly opposed (56% disapprove cf. 44% approve). These are the age groups that have experienced the Gulf War (1990-1991), Afghanistan War following the 9-11 atrocity (2001) and 2003 Invasion of Iraq. These wars involved relatively few Australian casualties in comparison to the Vietnam War.

“The Morgan Poll result today shows Australians are even more opposed to committing Australian ground combat troops to Syria & Iraq than indicated by a Newspoll conducted last weekend that showed 42% in favour of ground troops and 45% opposed. The results would have been influenced by a lead-up question asking respondents how likely they considered a terror attack in Australia.

“Today’s result is in contrast to a special snap SMS Morgan Poll conducted just over a year ago showed a majority of Australians (58.5%) supported Australia joining the US airstrikes in Syria while 41.5% disapproved of Australian involvement in airstrikes. The contrasting results show the complexity of the issue.”


Finding No. 6578 – This special snap SMS Morgan Poll was conducted with a representative cross-section of 973 Australians over the last two days, Thursday November 26, 2015 – Friday November 27, 2015. They were asked Do you approve or disapprove Australian ground combat troops being sent to fight the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria?” and respondents were then asked “why do you feel that way about Australian ground troops fighting in Iraq & Syria?”

Roy Morgan SMS Polling was extremely accurate at both the last two Federal Elections:

See 2014 Accuracy Results here.

Results analysed by Roy Morgan Helix Personas are available on a subscription basis.
www.HelixPersonas.com.au


Question:

Australians were asked (November 26-27, 2015): “Do you approve or disapprove Australian ground combat troops being sent to fight the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria”

Australian Electors were asked (September 24, 2014): “Do you support Australia joining the US airstrikes in Syria?

Australian Electors were asked (September 15, 2014): “Do you approve or disapprove of the decision to send 600 Australian troops to Iraq?”

Previous question asked in 1990, 1991, 2002 and 2003: “About Australians being part of an American military force used to depose Saddam Hussein, do you approve or disapprove of Australians being part of the American military force?”


Australian Troop deployments – Vietnam, Gulf War, Iraq War, Iraq (2014)

Gulf War (1991)

Iraq War (2003)

Iraq (2014)

Syria
(2014)

Iraq & Syria

(2015)

Dec
1990*

Feb
1991*

Sep
2002*

Dec
2002*

Mar 24-25,
2003*

Sep 15,
2014

Sep 24,
2014

Nov 26-27,
2015

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Approve/Yes

57

72

43

46

52

54

58.5

39

Disapprove/ No

43

28

57

54

48

46

41.5

61

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

*Undecided electors in May 1965 (11%); December 1990 (5%); February 1991 (3%); September 2002 (6%); December 2002 (3%); March 19-20, 2003 (5%) & March 24-25, 2003 (3.5%).


Australians were asked (November 26-27, 2015):
“Do you approve or disapprove Australian ground combat troops being sent to fight the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria”

Voting Preference

Total

Electors

Liberal

National

ALP

Greens

Other

Can’t say

Non
Electors

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

39

38

46

41

30

23

44

45

43

No

61

62

54

59

70

77

56

55

57

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Age & Gender

Total

Gender

Age

Men

Women

18-24

25-34

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

39

43

35

38

44

50

35

25

No

61

57

65

62

56

50

65

75

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

State & City/ Country

 

State

Region

Total

NSW

VIC

QLD

WA

SA

TAS

City

Country

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

39

40

35

43

43

31

29

40

37

No

61

60

65

57

57

69

71

60

63

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


Respondents were then asked: Why do you feel that way about Australian ground troops fighting in Iraq and Syria?

Those who approved of sending Australian ground combat troops referred to the need to deal with the problem at its source in the Middle East before they struck in Australia, the fact that air strikes alone were never going to solve the issue and the fact that we need to use all necessary means in concert with a truly global response because evil prospers when good men do nothing.

“It is imperative that we stop the rot over there before it strikes us at home on our soil.”
“We need to stop atrocities from the source before it happens on our doorstep.”
“ISIL needs to be stopped. Bringing the fight to them might make people stop supporting them.”
“We need to stand up for our rights.”
“To halt the threat of Islamic State terrorism.”
“Islamic State needs to be stopped.”
“Because they need to be removed.”
“We need to eliminate Islamic State.”
“We have to take down the insidious race called ISIS.”
“Bombing alone is ineffective. We need every country to send thousands of troops.”
“Air strikes along won’t solve the problem. We need boots on the ground to train, fight alongside, and rebuild the local infrastructure.”
“Unfortunately if ISIS isn’t stopped then no country or city will be safe from terrorism attacks.”
”The situation needs troops to stop it escalating further.”
“Because Australia has an obligation and responsibility to fight terrorism and to support our allies.”
“I feel Australia should be part of a world combined ground force, not alone, we are in danger as much as Paris. Certainly I do not agree we be on our own.”
“Evil prospers when good men do nothing. We need to defend the freedom of all men and do all we can do arrest the advance of those determined to strip it away.”
“We have to use all means necessary to eradicate this terrorist group using a global response.”

Those who disapproved of sending Australian ground combat troops said it won’t help the situation on the ground and it will only involve more Australians dying, that it’s a religious war between branches of Islam and we shouldn’t get involved, that the many lessons of history should be heeded and that we should only get involved as part of a combined force backed by a UN mandate.

“It won’t help the situation.”
“I don’t believe it will solve anything but will get many of our people killed.”
“Because war will lead to more death and pain.”
“It puts Australian troops at risk fighting an entrenched civil war.”
“No troops, no war. We shouldn’t be at USA’s beck and call. There’s always something in every conflict for them.”
“History shows us it will be a failure.”
“We need more thought before rushing in.”
“Because it is a religious war and we don’t have a chance of winning that.”
“It’s too dangerous. It isn’t our battle. I have changed my mind recently.”
 “It is primarily a sectarian war between Sunni and Shia. It is not strategically sensible as there is no realisable end game.”
“Let them fight their own battles our troops are too precious.”
“Unless every other country puts in a lot of troops in as well and then I would agree.”
 “It requires an invitation from the respective governments and needs to be coordinated response from allied forces.”
“I believe we should engage in combat if and only if we are part of a combined force headed by the United Nations.”
 “Because I don’t know enough about the troops to be sent or what the objective is to be able to make an informed decision.”
“It’s not our business. All other Arab countries should be responsible.”


For further information:

Contact

Office

Mobile

Gary Morgan:     

+61 3 9224 5213  

+61 411 129 094

Michele Levine:       

+61 3 9224 5215  

+61 411 129 093