Pakistani protesters burn U. S. flags in Quetta, Pakistan. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP)
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
Here's how you can tell we're coming to the end of President Bush's second term. America's image abroad - which has taken a serious pounding over the past 7 years - is starting to rebound… at least a little.
A new poll conducted for the BBC surveyed more than 17,000 people in 34 countries. The number of people who say the U.S. has a positive influence is now at 35%, compared to 31% a year ago. Those who say the U.S. has a negative influence is at 47% today, and that's down from 52% last year.
Also, positive views of the U.S. – in the 17 countries polled every year since 2005 – is actually up for the first time in four years. Nonetheless, the poll shows that views of U.S. influence in the world are still mainly negative, even though they've improved in half of the countries that were polled last year.
A State Department official acknowledges that views of the U.S. have been negative in recent years, but said 2003 and 2004 were a quote "anomaly." That's when we invaded Iraq using phony intelligence. He called public opinion a "lagging indicator of what we are doing."
The next president will have an opportunity to build on these numbers and help restore this country's image to what it used to be, when we were well-liked and respected by many more people around the globe than we are today.
Here’s my question to you: A new poll suggests America’s image is improving in many countries overseas. Why?
Tune in to the Situation Room at 6pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.
And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.