Beginning on May 2, 2012, the “1 Year Post Bin Laden” survey asked 208 respondents the following question:
Since Usama Bin Laden’s death, has al Qaeda inspired recruitment around the world increased or decreased?
The assumption of this question was that Osama Bin Laden, as of the time of his death, still played a key role in inspiring young men to join al Qaeda. After aggregating all the votes, 60% of all respondents believed al Qaeda recruitment had decreased in the year since Bin Laden’s death. Below are the results of the professional group breakdown.
Fairly unremarkable, roughly 60% of all groups thought al Qaeda recruitment had decreased while the remaining 40% felt al Qaeda recruitment had increased. The only real variance in the professional group breakdown came from ‘Academia’ where almost 70% of professors and thinktank folks seem to feel al Qaeda recruitment is down after UBL’s death. The ‘Academia’ voters fairly consistently believe al Qaeda’s in a tough spot regardless of the question – compare the ‘Academia’ responses here with results to questions #2, #3, #4 and #5. If I ran the same question post-Benghazi and based on current conditions in Syria, would the results be the same?
After looking at the professional groups, I broke the results down by all the demographic questions. The below table shows the results for each factor. Those results highlighted in green show groups selecting ‘Decreased’ higher than the overall average and those results highlighted in yellow selected ‘Increased’ higher than the overall average. Here are the results I found of interest.
- While only 5 voters (small sample) said their primary (preferred) information source was ‘Intelligence Reports’, 80% of these respondents believed al Qaeda recruitment decreased since UBL’s death.
- Those preferring ‘Social Media’, again, appear to still be quite worried about al Qaeda. ‘Social Media’ respondents were far more likely than average to believe al Qaeda recruitment has increased since UBL’s death.
- Lastly, those born outside the U.S. also selected ‘Decreased’ at a higher rate than average. The rate was only 10% higher than normal and I’m thinking its just a coincidence, but who knows.