Nearly seven out of ten Americans are concerned that the conflict between Russia and Ukraine will lead to the use of nuclear weapons, a Golden/TIPP Poll of 1,358 Americans nationwide completed on Friday showed. 68% expressed concern that the conflict may morph into a nuclear war.
The online survey was conducted from February 1 to 3.
The survey’s credibility interval (CI) is +/- 2.8 percentage points, meaning the study is accurate to within ± 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Americans been surveyed.
The survey asked respondents: “How concerned are you that the conflict between Russia and Ukraine will lead to the use of nuclear weapons?” The results read as follows:
- 31% were very concerned,
- 37% were somewhat concerned,
- 18% were not very concerned,
- 6% were not at all concerned, and
- 8% were not sure
TIPP had asked the same question in its January poll when 67% were concerned and 26% were not concerned.
The data shows an increase in intensity in February.
Those “very concerned” rose from 26% in January to 31% in February, while those “somewhat concerned” slipped from 41% in January to 37% in February.
Responding to the Pentagon’s announcement of a new $2.175 billion aid package for Kyiv on Friday, Dmitry Medvedev, deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, made a chilling threat of nuclear “retaliatory strikes” on a Russian military-owned TV channel on Saturday.
Medvedev told Russian journalist Nadana Fridrikhson, “There will be no negotiations in this case, only retaliatory strikes.”
“The whole of Ukraine remaining under Kyiv’s rule will burn… Our response may be anything.”Medvedev referred to Russia’s nuclear doctrine as part of this “anything” response with “all types of weapons.”
Medvedev’s threat follows Russian President Vladimir Putin’s veiled nuclear threat on Thursday as he likened the war to the battle of Stalingrad in WWII.
As he expressed his displeasure with Germany’s decision to supply Ukraine with tanks, Putin stated that Russia, like Stalingrad, faced German tanks, but this time Moscow had nukes.
Under The Hood
The survey showed that the concern of the war turning into a nuclear one is shared universally across party and ideological divides. Three out of every four Democrats are concerned, compared to 65% of Republicans and 60% of independents.
The chart below shows that the data is remarkably stable over time.
Ideologically, seven out of ten (72%) liberals shared the concern. In comparison, 69% of conservatives and 64% of moderates expressed concern.
Worries about a nuclear war increased with age.
- 65% of the 18 to 24 age group are concerned
- 68% of the 25 to 44 age group are concerned
- 65% of the 45 to 24 age group are concerned
- 72% of those 65 or older are concerned
As we noted in a recent editorial, we are fighting a war against Russia in Ukraine. NATO is actively confronting Russia.
Americans’ concerns are rightly placed. With the war’s anniversary around the corner, the high-pitch Russian rhetoric, matched by the West’s aggressive actions, points to rather than an end to the conflict. If history is any indication, the conditions now are a perfect recipe for World War III.
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Republished with permission from TIPP Insights