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Fatality sensitivity in coalition countries: a study of British, Polish and Australian public opinion on the Iraq war

Lis, Piotr (2011): Fatality sensitivity in coalition countries: a study of British, Polish and Australian public opinion on the Iraq war.

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Abstract

This paper investigates the fatality sensitivity of public opinion in coalition countries, i.e. those that participate in war efforts but are not a leading force. The analysis is based on the war-related opinion polls from the United Kingdom, Poland and Australia. Overall, the data does not provide a clear evidence of sensitivity to soldier casualties. However, the public appears sensitive to the intensity of terrorism in Iraq, which may be considered as a measure of success of the war efforts, dominating other indicators in the absence of frequent soldier fatalities. The results also show that news of success has a power to reduce war opposition, while scandals are costly in terms of public support.

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