Israel and Russia were the only two countries to have a more favourable view of President Donald Trump than his predecessor, Barack Obama, at the end of his time in office, a survey found.
The annual survey by the Pew Research Centre on America’s image abroad also found that some 81 percent of Israelis have a positive view of the United States under Trump, compared with a median of 58 percent, according to the results released Tuesday.
Some 40,447 respondents in 37 countries outside the United States answered the survey from Feb. 16 to May 8.
Israel’s favourability rating of the United States has held steady over the past several surveys, including 81 percent in 2015, 84 percent in 2014, and 83 percent in 2013. In 2009, the rating was at 71 percent, the lowest since the survey was started 15 years ago.
In Russia, 41 percent have a favourable view of the United States under Trump, compared with 15 percent under Obama.
Israelis’ confidence in Trump was measured at 56 percent, compared to 49 percent for Obama at the end of his second four-year term. But the median showed 22 percent confidence in Trump and 64 percent in Obama.
The survey also found that 69 percent of Israelis surveyed said they considered Trump to be a strong leader, compared to a median of 55 percent. Some 54 percent of Israelis said Trump is well qualified to serve as president; the median was 26 percent.
Considering the border wall with Mexico, 42 percent of Israelis supported Trump’s idea, compared with 24 percent from all countries surveyed. On Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, 69 percent of Israelis were opposed, comparing to the 71 percent of the other countries surveyed.
“The sharp decline in how much global publics trust the U.S. president on the world stage is especially pronounced among some of America’s closest allies in Europe and Asia, as well as neighbouring Mexico and Canada,” according to the survey.
Among close U.S. allies, in Germany, the favourability ranking for the U.S. has dropped to 11 percent under Trump from 86 under Obama; in France, 14 percent from 84 percent, and in Canada, 22 percent from 83 percent. Sweden saw a drop to 10 percent from 93 percent.
Among Middle East countries, the U.S. did not fare particularly well under either president, but again there was more confidence in Obama. Some numbers: Turkey 11 percent for Trump, 45 for Obama; Jordan, 5 percent and 14 percent, and Lebanon, 11 percent and 36 percent.
Many countries that have had poor relations with the U.S. over many years were not among those questioned, such as Syria and Iraq.