A large majority of Americans are worried that the U.S. will take part in a major war during the next four years, while Donald Trump is president.
A poll conducted by NBC News and Survey Monkey found that 76 per cent of Americans are concerned about war. That number has grown 10 percentage points since the same poll was conducted in February.
Only 23 per cent of respondents said they are not worried.
The increasing concerns about military conflict are largely centred on North Korea — 41 per cent of adults surveyed said it was the greatest immediate threat, followed by the Islamic State (28 per cent) and Russia (18 per cent).
The results were relatively uniform across the political spectrum. Most Republicans, Democrats and independents agreed North Korea posed the biggest threat. All groups were significantly less concerned about Iran and China.
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Tensions between North Korea and the U.S. have been growing for years but became more heated this month when North Korea successfully test-launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
North Korea’s Academy of Defence Science said the test of an ICBM – the Hwasong-14 – marked the “final step” in creating a “confident and powerful nuclear state that can strike anywhere on Earth.”
Days later, the U.S. said it shot down a simulated, incoming intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) similar to the ones being developed by countries like North Korea, in a test of the country’s new missile defences.
Americans are increasingly aware of these tensions. The NBC News poll found 59 per cent of respondents feel “less safe” about a threat from North Korea than they did one year ago, 10 per cent feel “more safe,” and 28 per cent say they feel “about as safe.”
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And their leader seems to agree. In April, Trump said solving things diplomatically would be “very difficult.”
“There is a chance we could end up having a major, major conflict with North Korea,” he added.
This NBC News/Survey Monkey poll was completed by 5,347 American adults between July 10 and 14, 2017. The poll is considered accurate within plus or minus 2.1 percentage points.
— With files from The Associated Press and Reuters