North Korea and Iran have been rated the two most unfavorable countries in 10 of the last 11 Gallup polls
Americans have a highly negative view of North Korea. According to the latest Gallup poll, only 9% Americans rated North Korea favorably, while a whopping 87% rated it unfavorably. Justin McCarthy of Gallup said that the North has consistently ranked among the lowest-rated countries for more than a decade. The 87% unfavorable rating is the highest since 2001.
North Korea sends ‘state-sponsored slaves’ abroad to earn money
North Korea’s favorability rating was even worse than 11% for Iran. Americans have rated these two countries most unfavorable in 10 of the last 11 times Gallup has conducted the polls. Just a few days ago, the U.S. National Security Agency identified North Korea as the country behind the massive cyber-attack on Sony Pictures late last year.
Recently, North Korea was accused of sending hundreds of thousands of its workers abroad only to seize their wages. Pyongyang has been using this tactic to earn money amid sanctions from major economies. These revelations have only reinforced more than a decade of negative attitudes towards the country. North Korea’s favorability ratings stood at 26% in 2000 and 31% in 2001. But the ratings declined dramatically after the then-President George W. Bush called Pyongyang an “axis of evil” in 2002.
North Korea second-greatest enemy of the U.S.
However, this time Russia has overtaken North Korea as the greatest enemy of the United States. Rising tensions between the White House and Kremlin over the Ukraine crisis have made Russia the No.1 enemy on Americans’ minds. About 18% Gallup respondents said that Russia was the greatest enemy of the United States. This year, 15% named North Korea as the biggest U.S. enemy, followed by China (12%) and Iran (9%).
Yesterday, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un asked his army to be fully prepared for war. His statement comes just a week before South Korea and the U.S. start an eight-week long joint military exercise. The South Korea-U.S. drills typically provoke military threats from North Korea. Pyongyang has historically protested the annual exercises, calling them a rehearsal for war.