Andrew Kohut and Bruce Stokes

Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press, and Pew consultant Bruce Stokes were Wednesday's guests. They discussed their new book, "America Against the World." Here are excerpts from their remarks:

On the world's view of Americans:

(Stokes) "What we have found is a rising antipathy to Americans, not just American policy.... A majority of people still liked Americans. But the numbers are down in Britain and other places you might not have expected."

On whether the US is less popular overseas now than during the Vietnam War:

(Kohut) "I don't know if we can answer that question, because President Johnson suspended these surveys.... Certainly, we are less liked than we were in the '80s."

On American attitudes toward other nations:

(Kohut) "The problem is not that Americans want to rule the world. It is that Americans take the world for granted."

On the federal government's efforts to improve the image of the US overseas:

(Kohut) "You have to have modest expectations about public diplomacy, especially in the Arab world, because attitudes there are not driven by values. They are driven by concerns about our policies with Israel, and, now, the war on terrorism, the war in Iraq."

On the news media's impact on the US image:

(Kohut) "American news media are less important than the American entertainment media because people around the world tend to like our television programs and our movies."

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