San Francisco Chronicle

Poll: Few Iranians see US favorably, despite Obama
San Francisco Chronicle

Few Iranians have favorable opinions of the United States, a view that has changed little since the election of an American president who has expressed a willingness to talk to Tehran, a rare poll of Iranian citizens showed Monday.

Just 29 percent of Iranians said they have favorable views of the United States in the latest poll, which was conducted last month. In a similar survey in February 2008 — nearly a year before Barack Obama became president — 34 percent had positive opinions about the U.S.

In a further sign of wariness toward the United States, 38 percent in last month’s poll said the U.S. is the greatest threat to Iran. Only Israel was ranked higher — 44 percent of Iranians said the Jewish state posed the greatest threat to their country.

The latest survey was released days before Friday’s national elections in Iran, in which hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is being pressed by his main challenger, reformist Mir Hossein Mousavi.