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A Rising Tide Lifts Mood in the Developing World July 25, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Economy & Business, Geopolitics, In The News, philosophy & politics.
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Pew Global Attitudes Project: Summary of Findings: A Rising Tide Lifts Mood in the Developing World
The planet is a happier place these days, at least in many parts of the world where incomes are low and life is tough … but economies are improving. In particular, as economic growth has surged in much of Latin America, East Europe and Asia over the past five years, people are expressing greater satisfaction with their personal lives, family incomes and national conditions. The picture is considerably different in most advanced nations, where per capita GDP gains have been less robust and citizen satisfaction has changed little since 2002.

Among the most striking trends in predominantly Muslim nations is the continuing decline in the number saying that suicide bombing and other forms of violence against civilians are justifiable in the defense of Islam. In Lebanon, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Indonesia, the proportion of Muslims who view suicide bombing and other attacks against civilians as being often or sometimes justified has declined by half or more over the past five years.

Wide majorities say such attacks are, at most, rarely acceptable. However, this is decidedly not the case in the Palestinian territories. Fully 70% of Palestinians believe that suicide bombings against civilians can be often or sometimes justified, a position starkly at odds with Muslims in other Middle Eastern, Asian, and African nations.

The decreasing acceptance of extremism among Muslims also is reflected in declining support for Osama bin Laden. Since 2003

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