Most Americans Say Wars' Goals Were Not Achieved

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2014-01_4030dde0f5.jpgMichael Watkins/Thinkstock (WASHINGTON) -- Were the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan worth fighting? Most respondents to a new USA TODAY/Pew Research Center don't believe so. Two years after the Obama administration withdrew all U.S. forces from Iraq, 52 percent of Americans believe the goals were not achieved, compared to 37 percent who felt otherwise. These numbers are essentially the opposite of what respondents said in November 2011.

The report card on the war in Afghanistan is equally as devastating as U.S. troops get ready to pull up stakes there. By 52 percent to 38 percent, Americans says the goals were not achieved.

As for the initial justifications for going to war, 51 percent said the U.S. was right to have launched an invasion of Afghanistan following the 9/11 attacks more than 12 years ago, compared to 41 percent who now say it was the wrong decision.

After U.S. forces were sent to Iraq to look for weapons of mass destruction and oust dictator Saddam Hussein, public sentiment for the war was running three-to-one in favor of the operation in March 2003.

Yet, now, 50 percent of Americans say it was the wrong decision with 38 percent still supporting the plan to go to war in Iraq.

The poll of 1,504 adults was taken Jan. 15-19.

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