At YouGov, Linley Sanders reports that European support for NATO is declining, with support sliding among Britons from 73% in 2017 to 59% in 2018, Germans from 68% to 54%, Danes from 80% to 70%, Norwegians from 75% to 66%. In France, not even a majority is for NATO, with support dropping from 54% in 2017 to 39% in 2018. Americans felt much stronger about the commitment to defend European allies from Russian attack than the Europeans did. Sanders writes:
A key tenant of the NATO treaty is Article 5, which outlines that an attack on one NATO ally is an attack on all, obliging all member countries to defend one another. Clear majorities of Americans (57%), Britons (66%) and Germans (58%) back the pledge, with around half of French people (53%) also being willing to come to the defense of their allies. Hypothetically, most citizens in key NATO countries believe in the promise—until they are asked about their willingness to defend specific nations.
More Americans are willing to use military force to defend other countries against Russia than those who don’t wish to get involved—making it one of the only key NATO allies to uphold the same defense for each nation listed. While pluralities in each country tend to support coming to the aid of most nations, there is particular ambivalence about defending Turkey, despite its status as a NATO member. In fact, only in the US do people tend to think Turkey should be reinforced (36% vs 22%).
Of the countries surveyed, Germany, Sweden, and Finland concluded that they should not use military force to help the US if Russia attacked. A majority of citizens in Denmark (56%), Great Britain (54%) and Norway (50%) would help America, while a plurality in France (41%) agreed. By contrast, 54% of Americans say they should defend Germany should it find itself besieged by Russia.
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