Americans generally are less willing to support foreign policies on moral or humanitarian grounds than when they are cast as directly benefiting the United States or its allies.
In February, when Gallup asked Americans how important various foreign-policy goals should be, 52% rated promoting and defending human rights in other countries as “very important.” Out of nine goals Gallup asked about, it ranked third from the bottom, ahead of “helping other countries build democracies” and “promoting economic development in other countries” (31% each). By far the strongest support — above 80% in each case — was given to goals related to U.S. national security and securing adequate energy supplies for the country.
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Americans generally are less willing to support foreign policies on moral or humanitarian grounds than when they are cast as directly benefiting the United States or its allies.

In February, when Gallup asked Americans how important various foreign-policy goals should be, 52% rated promoting and defending human rights in other countries as “very important.” Out of nine goals Gallup asked about, it ranked third from the bottom, ahead of “helping other countries build democracies” and “promoting economic development in other countries” (31% each). By far the strongest support — above 80% in each case — was given to goals related to U.S. national security and securing adequate energy supplies for the country.

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