Americans' Confidence in US Military Continues Its Decline, Survey Shows

© AP Photo / Tech. Sgt. Micah TheurichIn this photo taken Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013 and released by the U.S. Air Force, soldiers of the East Africa Response Force (EARF), a Djibouti-based joint team assigned to Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, depart from a U.S. Air Force C-130 Hercules in Juba, South Sudan to support with an ordered departure of personnel from the city
In this photo taken Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013 and released by the U.S. Air Force, soldiers of the East Africa Response Force (EARF), a Djibouti-based joint team assigned to Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, depart from a U.S. Air Force C-130 Hercules in Juba, South Sudan to support with an ordered departure of personnel from the city - Sputnik International, 1920, 04.12.2021
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Americans appear to be losing confidence in several US institutions, including the US military, law enforcement, the office of the president, and the Supreme Court of the United States, according to a poll conducted from October 25th to November 7th by a bipartisan team with Beacon Research and Shaw and Company Research.
Public confidence in the military remains on a steady decline, according to a survey published this week by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute.
According to the survey, only 45% of those Americans polled have "a great deal" of trust in the military, amounting to an 11% drop since February and a 25% drop since 2018, the first year of the nonprofit organisation's poll.
Meanwhile, 33% of Americans surveyed said they have "some confidence" in the military, resulting in a 6% uptick since February, and a 10% increase since 2018.
This time around, respondents were also asked to divulge the reason for their level of confidence. "Service members" was the top response from those who said they had "a great deal" or "some" confidence in the military, reflecting 43% of the responses.
Those with less confidence in the military listed a litany of reasons for their response, including political leadership, mismanagement of funds, and scandals - including sexual assault.
Members of the US Airforce honour guard march in the Veterans Day Parade in New York City, US, November 11, 2019. - Sputnik International, 1920, 27.11.2019
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However, the military is not alone, as "great" confidence has declined across the board for several US institutions. Per the survey, law enforcement observed a 17% decline from respondents, and both the presidency and the SCOTUS plummeted 9%.

"The fact that 'political leadership' was the plurality response among those with low confidence may be an indication of the corrosive effects of political polarisation in the body politic generally bleeding over into attitudes towards the military", Peter Feaver, a political science professor at Duke University, told Task and Purpose.

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute's survey also found that 52% of Americans surveyed view China as the biggest international threat to the US, representing a 15% uptick from February, and a 31% uptick since 2018.
Russia (14%) and Iran (12%) were seen as the next biggest threats to the US.
Results were weighted based on age, gender, race, religion, and education. Pollsters gathered data via 998 live telephone interviews and 1,525 online surveys.
The survey has a margin of error of 1.96%.
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