US and UK are major suppliers of Saudi-Arabia with weapons. We see that these weapons used to kill innocent people in Yemen (and maybe in other countries by Al-qaeda). But as Philipp's answer implies international community can not ban selling weapons to Saudi-Arabia. Yet people can have small effect on governors. So the question is:

Is there a poll on "How people in US and UK think about the issue?"

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    I really doubt that the average joe has a properly formed opinion about this matter. The issue isn't very present in the media. – Philipp Dec 27 '16 at 17:05
  • Innocent is a vague and easily malleable term. All weapons and every action has effect on innocent people. – hownowbrowncow Dec 27 '16 at 20:35
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    Not a direct answer, but Saudi Arabia got mentioned a fair bit in the 2016 US presidential election. – Andrew Grimm Dec 27 '16 at 20:59
  • @Andrew Grimm can this "Not a direct answer" be developed to a "direct answer" to this question? – user 1 Dec 28 '16 at 6:48
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    Since the question specifically asks for some kind of poll, this is not opinion-based. – indigochild Dec 28 '16 at 15:28

For the case of the UK: As far as I can tell there is no poll regarding the view of Britons on the UK selling weapons to Saudi Arabia.

For the US: I believe the same is true - no polls thus far.

I think this is mostly because, as Philipp has said, the average person is not properly informed about this matter. This is because nearly all the details of foreign weapon sales are done under strict non-disclosure agreements requiring security clearances and a huge amount of export control.

Bear in mind good quality polls should not be hard to find. Consult your typical polling websites and use google with caution.

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  • thnx+; i dont mark "accept" till a poll happen :) – user 1 Jan 10 '17 at 17:54
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    I answered your question haha you can't expect me to make a poll happen when I doubt it ever will... – Psi Jan 10 '17 at 18:01

In the US, relative recent polling by CNN and Gallop find that a plurality of Americans either view Saudi Arabia as either unfriendly or an enemy of the US, or unfavorably. From there I think we can safely extrapolate that most Americans view selling arms to them as problematic at the very least, although the question was not asked or answered directly.

The UK has similar unfavorable views of the Kingdom. In fact, the UK's populace may be more slanted against the House of Saud.

There are a number of Russian supplied sites that supply even more on-point claims, but I will not link to them, as they can be safely assumed to be propaganda in support of their client state Iran.

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  • I agree with this. The thing missing is that if the choice was paying $0.01 more in gas or keep selling weapons to SA, the vast majority would rather pay a penny a gallon less in gas. – SoylentGray Jan 17 '17 at 16:24
  • Problematic yes. But, since the weapons were bought to combat Shias in Yemen, I think a lot of people are "fine" with it in a realpolitk sense. (No polls to quote unfortunately - only gleaning this information from comments in as diverse sites as Mother Jones and Reddit The_Donald. By realpolitik I mean - sales are made, jobs created (sustained) and inept Saudi Arabia is using it against a foe who is no friend of the US. – Mayo Sep 6 '17 at 13:42

There are petitions to try and stop the UK from selling weapons to our 'buddies' in the middle east..But judging by Theresa May's most recent tour to Bahrain and her Brexit speech on 17/1/17, centring around creating more trade out of Europe, I can't see it ending as making & selling weapons is one thing the UK is sadly quite skilled at and we're going to need to try and offset the loss of trade by leaving the single market by whatever means possible. Expect us to flood the region with even more ways of killing each other.

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    This doesn't really answer the asked question: "How people in US and UK think about selling weapons to Saudi-Arabia". – user11249 Jan 17 '17 at 14:04
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    Agreed - as a general consensus people in the UK aren't overly happy about the moral implications of selling weapons to Saudi Arabi & to other countries in the middle east. There aren't reliable sources to state this however, and the only ones which are quantifiable would be said petitions which have been created in the effort of getting the issue debated in parliament. However as said due to other factors, I cannot see us stopping selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, regardless of public opinion due to other macroeconomic forces. – JonnyC2017 Jan 17 '17 at 14:07

In the absence of a poll about a policy that few people are aware of, it might be relevant to bring up the history of this relationship in order to guess how people would feel about it if it became a hot issue.

Basically, President Carter brokered a deal with Egypt and Saudi Arabia whereby they would refrain from military or foreign policy attacks on Israel in exchange for very substantial military sales and support for both countries. The basic relationship has produced almost five decades of stability in the region.

This can be construed as pro-oil wealth, as pro-Israel, a positive relationship with Muslim countries (not based upon Donald Trump's business interests), and in the case of Egypt for most of the period, as support for a secular regime over an Islamist one. Stability is also a good thing after multiple wars in Asia that are winding down.

On the other hand, attitudes towards Saudi Arabia have soured as it is seen (at least at the unofficial level) as a source for global radical Islamic terrorism, was the source of most of the 9-11 hijackers, continues in an era where public opinion towards oil resources is very partisan, and has been a lot of money over a great many years that may have run its course. Americans on the left and the right are also more aware of human rights violations in Saudi Arabia than they might have been in the past. U.S. involvement in Yemen has also not been terribly popular.

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