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My name is _____________. I'm calling for Retro Poll.
This is not a sales call; we do public opinion polling, and your number was chosen at random for a brief interview. Would you be able to take a few minutes of your time to respond to our poll on current U.S. government policies?
(only if asked "how long?": it takes about 10 minutes.)
Are you 16 or over?
Thank you

1. In your personal opinion which statement best describes the impact of the U.S. Government's War on Terrorism:

a) It prevents terrorism
b) It has had little impact on terrorism
c) It tends to create terrorists
d) none of the above/ not sure

In the rest of this poll, you will notice that the first half asks for factual information and the second half asks for your opinions. In the first part it is better to say you don't know than to guess the answer to any question. Few people will know all the answers so don't feel bad about saying you don't know. But please try and be honest and complete the poll. We'll tell you where to find the right answers to the factual questions later. Ok?

2. Is there evidence that Saddam Hussein worked with Al Qaeda? (y/ n/ d)

Correct answer: No

For analysis showing the lack of contact between Iraq and Al Qaeda,
(See: FPIF: Seven Reasons to Oppose a U.S. Invasion of Iraq)
For more recent comments see:

The Bill of Rights, passed in 1791, includes the first 10 amendments to the Constitution and provides for most of our civil rights. Which of the following are part of the Bill of Rights:

3. Guarantees accused persons the right to a speedy and public trial. (y/ n/ d)

Correct answer: Yes

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
(See Bill of Rights)

4. Provides that the Government may force accused persons to testify against themselves.
(y/ n/ d)

Correct answer: No

Amendment V

"No person ... shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself...."
(See Bill of Rights)

5. Authorizes the Government to detain suspects indefinitely and punish them as it sees fit without charging them with specific crimes.
(y/ n/ d)

Correct answer: No

Amendment VI

There is no amendment authorizing the government to detain suspects indefinitely. Article I, section 9 of the constitutions forbids congress to suspend the right to a writ of habeas corpus except in the cases of rebellion or invasion. Habeas corpus is the right to be freed unless convicted and sentenced to prison. Authorization for indefinite detention has been absent from U.S. law for over 200 years until 2001 when President George W. Bush issued an executive order permitting indefinite detentions of suspects without a requirement that they be charged, tried in a court, found guilty or innocent and sentenced. Though heinous, the crimes of September 11, 2001 do not constitute either a rebellion or an invasion. Indefinite detention also violates Amendment VIII of the bill of rights, which states: "excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishment inflicted."
(See Bill of Rights)

Hundreds of people, largely Middle Eastern men, have been detained in the past 2 years and none has been charged with or tried for terrorist acts.

6. Protects people against unreasonable searches and seizures by the Government in our private lives and homes. (y/ n/ d)

Correct answer: Yes

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
(See Bill of Rights

7. Guarantees the unrestricted right of the people to peaceably assemble to express their political views (y/ n/ d)

Correct answer: Yes

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

8. Is the following statement true or false or don't know: Sexual abuse and physical beatings have been systematically inflicted upon South Asians held on immigration issues in some prisons within the United States as well as prisoners at Guantanamo, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

Correct answer: True

The sadistic abuse and sexual humiliation by American soldiers at Abu Ghraib prison has shocked most Americans, but in American prisons today, wanton staff brutality and degrading treatment of inmates occur across the country with distressing frequency.

9. Since the death penalty was restored in the U.S. how many convicted murderers awaiting execution have been later proven innocent and set free. a) 0-10 b) under 50 c) over 110 d) don't know

Correct answer: c) over 110.

Largely through the work of students (e.g., Center for Wrongful Convictions) rather than officers of the judicial system itself, more than 100 persons convicted of murder have been set free.

Center for Wrongful Convictions
Amnesty International

10. In response to requests under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Attorney General Ashcroft ordered all federal agencies to make public the records on thousands of people arrested after 9/11. (t/ f/ d)

Correct answer: False

In a memo to all federal agencies, Attorney General Ashcroft urged these agencies to resist most FOIA requests.

Passed in 1974, FOIA is our federal sunshine law that forces federal agencies to disclose their public records and documents. Ashcroft quashed the FOIA and assured the agencies that the justice department would defend their actions in court.

11. In the Oslo Peace Agreement of 1993 with the Palestinians, Israel agreed to begin withdrawing its military bases and settlements from Palestinian lands in the West Bank. Since then Israel has withdrawn from:

a) a few settlements b) 20% of its settlements c) built more settlements & bases to defend them d) don't know

Correct answer: c) Built more settlements and bases to defend them.

12. The controlling relationship of Israel over the lives of millions of Palestinians is exemplified by the separation wall. Is it true or false that this wall is condemned by the International Court of Justice and the United Nations as violations of international law but is endorsed by President Bush?

Correct answer: True.

The separation wall has been condemned by the majority of the countries in the world, the UN, and the International Court of Justice.

Letter from President Bush to Prime Minister Sharon, April 2004

13. The U.S. media has often repeated claims that Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat turned down an excellent peace offer from Israel's Ehud Barak during talks in the U.S. at Camp David in 2000. Actual documents from the meetings support this view. (True, false, don't know).

Correct answer: False.

Robert Malley in the New York Times and Ha'aretz, July 10, 2001. Akiva Eldar, "On the Basis of the Nonexistant Camp David Understanding," Ha'aretz, November 16, 2000. Both confirm that Israel made no offer in writing at Camp David. Also, "Barak's proposal at Camp David was based on a document known as the Beilin-Abu Mazen understandings. This document was completed, after extensive secret negotiations, in the last week of October 1995,...In Israeli discourse the plan was described as a far reaching concession...In fact, the Beilin-Abu Mazen Plan is a shameful document that leaves all the settlements untouched." (Tanya Reinhart, Israel/Palestine. How to end the War of 1948, 2002, Seven Stories Press, pp 22-26).

14. Over 346 cities and towns and 4 states have passed resolutions concerning the USA Patriot Act. Do these resolutions a) call for vigorous law enforcement of the Act b) ask that it be strengthened c) call for the removal of key provisions because they violate our democratic rights d) don't know

Correct answer: C

352 cities and counties and 4 states have signed resolutions against the patriot act as of today, representing more than 55 million citizens, now demand removal of key provisions of the USAPA because they violate our democratic rights.


15. Do you receive most of your news and information from a) daily newspaper b) magazines c) major TV networks including PBS d) internet sources e) alternative media f) other

The following questions ask for your personal opinion. If you have no opinion or your opinion is not among the choices, please so state.

16. Should the U.S. fully withdraw its troops from Iraq? (y/ n/ d)

17. U.S. soldiers and private contractors have tortured prisoners in prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan. Do you believe that these are the acts of a few bad apples? (y/ n/ d),2763,1206725,00.html,2763,1212197,00.html

More than 400 legal scholars in the U.S. "asked Congress to identify everyone who should be held accountable for the torture at Abu Ghraib prison, and determine what sanctions are appropriate. The sanctions, they said, could include "impeachment and removal from office of any civil officer of the United States responsible."

The President and other high officials appear to be involved in the decision to torture prisoners, despite efforts by lawyers in the administration to justify such actions.

18. A legal review in California showed 76 system problems in death penalty procedures (similar to 85 problems found in Illinois) that led to unjust convictions. Should other states do as Illinois has done and put a moratorium on executions until unfairness in application of the death penalty has been addressed? (y/ n/ d)

The legal review of the California system Acrobat PDF File

19. In your opinion is the USA Patriot Act a) having no impact on our civil rights b) protecting our right to dissent and strengthening civil rights c) removing important rights and Constitutional guarantees d) not sure

If you wish to review the Patriot Act, and commentary about the impact of the Patriot Act, see:

20. If, as alleged, President Bush and his staff have films and photos showing U.S. troops sodomizing children in Iraq does the suppression of this information from scrutiny constitute collaboration in criminal activity? y/ n / q (question is leading, speculative, and unfair) / d (don't know) (pending documentation)

21. Do you support or oppose the U.S.A. Patriot Act provision requiring the cooperation of local business people and professionals to turn over records of their clients and customers to federal agents and be sworn to silence about their actions? (s/ o/ d)

If you wish to review the Patriot Act, and commentary about the impact of the Patriot Act, see:

22. The Federal Bureau of Prisons issued an emergency surveillance order permitting conversations between prisoners and their lawyers to be recorded without a warrant. Do you support or oppose this removal of confidentiality rights? (s/ o/ d)

23. Do you support or oppose the USA Patriot Act authorizing government agents to enter your home and otherwise investigate you without cause, recording and copying any materials they wish to, and never telling you? (s/ o/ d)

If you wish to review the Patriot Act, and commentary about the impact of the Patriot Act, see:

24. Should Israel abide by the UN resolutions that require Israel to return all Israeli settlers to within its UN established borders? ( y/ n / d)

Israel is the target of at least 65 UN resolutions whereas the Palestinians are the targets of none:

25. In your personal opinion which statement best describes the intentions of the Israeli government toward the Palestinians and the territories they currently live in (i.e. the West Bank and Gaza). a) To work with the Palestinians to form a fully independent country called Palestine living in peace next door to Israel. b) To convince the Palestinians that any Palestinian government will be under Israeli military control. c) To eventually seize all the Palestinian lands to continue expanding Israeli settlements and military control. d) None of these or don’t know.

26. Today Israel controls the lives of over 3 million Palestinians most of whom are not its citizens, have no basic human rights and can not vote in Israeli elections. Is this relationship consistent with democratic government?(y/ n /d)

Alhewar: Janus Face of Israeli Democracy
Amnesty International
Haaretz Daily

Yakar--Center for Social Concern

Do you support or oppose that the following policies be carried out by the U.S. government:

27. Creation of a national health fund providing total health care coverage for every American at all medical institutions, with the elimination of health insurance company profits and out of pocket patient costs. (s/ o/ d)

28. The U.S. should support international attempts to prosecute war crimes and crimes against humanity. (s/ o/ d)

29. Lengthy detention for anyone whom the U.S. Government decides to arrest without their providing any criminal charges, proofs or trials. (s/ o/ d)

30. Treating those who oppose or resist U.S. government policies and military actions as terrorist supporters or terrorists. (s/ o/ d)

Please provide
your age (31)____
sex (32)______
highest educational level(33)______
(G=grades 1-11, HS=high school grad, SC=some college, degrees: AA, BA, BS, MA, MS, MFA, PhD, MD, LLD);
State (35)___
Ethnicity (36)_______
(NA=Native American, AP=Asian/Pacific Islander, AA=African American, LA=Latin American, CA=European-American, DS=Decline to State, BR=Biracial)

Thank you so much for participating in our poll and for caring enough to share your views. For answers and links to the factual questions please check our web site at Final poll results will be posted on October 7, 2004.

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