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19 Apr, 2013

Survey: Solid Majority of Iranian Americans Oppose Military Strike on Iran


WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)– April 18, 2013 – The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) today released the findings of its 2013 National Public Opinion Survey of Iranian Americans. The results demonstrate that Iranian Americans retain close ties to Iran and want to see a democratic Iran that respects human rights. A majority are supportive of President Obama’s handling of Iran’s nuclear program.

Most Iranian Americans have family in Iran. Thirty-two percent (32%) report that they have at least one parent living in the country. Sixty-six percent (66%) of Iranian Americans surveyed stated that they communicate with their family and friends in Iran at least several times a month.

Iranian Americans want to see change in Iran. The survey indicates that from among a list of seven issues relating to U.S.-Iran relations, the greatest number of Iranian Americans, fifty-six percent (56%), cited the promotion of human rights and democracy as the most important, followed by thirty-one percent (31%) who chose promotion of regime change.

Iranian Americans differ in their views as to what would be the best course of action for the U.S. to take towards Iran. Forty-two percent (42%) believe either the promotion of regime change or the promotion of human rights and democracy would be in America’s best interest, while thirty-five percent (35%) cite diplomatic negotiations or establishing diplomatic relations. Only three percent (3%) said that military action against Iran would be the best course of action.

When asked about potential U.S. strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities, a total of sixty-four percent (64%) of Iranian Americans said they were opposed to such strikes, while eleven percent (11%) said they would support them, and seventeen percent (17%) might support them in some circumstances. Nine percent (9%) were not sure.

A solid majority of Iranian Americans—fifty-nine percent (59%)—stated they approved of President Obama’s handling of Iran’s nuclear program, although they are divided about whether U.S. policy in this area will be successful. Furthermore, a large majority of sixty-eight percent (68%) would support the removal of sanctions on Iran if the Iranian regime reached an agreement with the U.S. and the international community concerning its nuclear program.

Most Iranian Americans do not support opposition groups or figures in Iran. In the 2013 survey, only fifteen percent (15%) said they did so. This should not be interpreted to mean that the current Iranian regime has significant support among the Iranian American population. In fact, in the 2011 PAAIA survey, sixty-seven percent (67%) of respondents stated that they wanted to see Iran become a democracy. Only two percent (2%) said that Iran should continue to be an Islamic republic.

PAAIA commissioned George Mason University to conduct a telephone survey of Iranian American adults. The survey was conducted between February 1st and February 27th, 2013 and is based on successful interviews in English with a representative sample of 400 Iranian American respondents. The margin of error is +/- 5.0 percentage points.

For the complete report, please visit PAAIA’s website at www.paaia.org.

The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nonsectarian, independent organization that represents the domestic interests of the Iranian American community before U.S. policymakers, opinion makers and the American public at large. PAAIA seeks to achieve its mission by focusing on three major areas of activities: Community Building, Image Building, and Influence Building.

Contacts: PAAIA, Morad Ghorban, 202-828-8370, info@paaia.org