For the past 40 years, a majority of Americans saw the U.S. as a constantly rising power on the world stage. This year, they’ve changed their minds.
The BBC reports that 53% of Americans saw the U.S. as a “less important and powerful” actor in international affairs in 2013, a first in the 40-year history of the Pew survey.
Also remarkably, a narrow majority (52%) wanted the U.S. to “mind its own business internationally” — another first.
Wide margins of Americans disapproved of the Obama administration’s handling of Iran, Syria, China and Afghanistan. One notable exception was counter-terrorism, which had majority approval.