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More Americans than ever view China as greatest US enemy: Gallup

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A record percentage of Americans surveyed for a new poll views China as the United States’ biggest threat, Gallup said. 

Forty-five percent of respondents now say China is the top enemy of the U.S., a percentage that has more than doubled since 2020. 

Respondents ranked Russia, North Korea and Iran, respectively, behind China as the United States’ most dangerous enemy on matters of foreign policy and international trade. 

At the same time, overall favorability toward China has slid to a historically low 20 percent, Gallup noted. 

Most respondents also see China as the world’s largest economic power, the survey giant found, with only 37 percent indicating they believe the U.S. is driving the world’s economy. Almost half  46 percent  said they believe China will remain the world’s largest economic power in 20 years. A total of 63 percent said China’s economic expansion is a threat to the U.S. in the next 10 years. 

Tensions with China have grown since the coronavirus pandemic, which was first reported in Wuhan, began last year. Some U.S. lawmakers and human rights activists have also railed against the Chinese government for reported human rights abuses against the Uyghur ethnic minority in some parts of the country. 

The Biden administration has in recent weeks strengthened its messaging on China, calling into question coronavirus data the country has reported and vowing to get tougher on trade deals. 

“This is our effort to communicate clearly to the Chinese government how the United States intends to proceed at a strategic level, what we believe our fundamental interests and values are, and what our concerns with their activities are,” national security adviser Jake Sullivan said last week.

The Gallup poll was conducted Feb. 3-18 among 1,021 adults in the U.S. and has a margin of error of 4 percentage points. 

Tags COVID-19 pandemic Gallup Jake Sullivan Joe Biden

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