Europe Backs U.S. Action

091301, story image, terror rescue effort rubble, JM
Mike Heller
Many Europeans want their nations to take part in a well-planned military action against the terrorists responsible for last week's attacks against the United States, a new poll suggests.

Some 79 percent of British adults and 73 percent of French adults surveyed in a Sofres-Gallup poll said their nations should cooperate in a U.S.-led military campaign aimed at the masterminds of the Sept. 11 attacks.

The poll, published in Wednesday's Liberation newspaper, gave no margin of error.

More than half of Germans, 53 percent, said they would support a role in a U.S. military anti-terrorism campaign, as did 66 percent of Italians; 66 percent of Israelis; and 58 percent of Spaniards.

The poll was based on interviews with 1,000 French adults and 3,000 adults in the United States, Britain, Germany, Spain, Italy and Israel.

The United States has not said exactly how it plans to retaliate, but President George W. Bush signed a congressional resolution into law on Tuesday that authorizes him to use military force against those responsible.

When asked whether France might play a military role, Defense Minister Alain Richard told CNN on Wednesday that his country is keeping its options open.

"There is no restriction from our side about the kind of means and the range of means that could be used," Richard said. "Our contribution can be very significant."

President Jacques Chirac met with President Bush in Washington on Tuesday to express France's commitment to fighting terrorism.

Chirac was the first world leader to meet Mr. Bush since last Tuesday's attacks that took down the World Trade Center in New York, severely damaged the Pentagon in Washington and left more than 5,000 people dead and missing.

By Pamela Sampson
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