Most nations will bid a jubilant goodbye to George W. Bush, it's true. The Pew Global Poll last month found that majorities in 20 of the 24 nations surveyed have little or no confidence in him, with his negative ratings topping 80 percent in major powers like France and Germany. But given his press, what's more surprising is how easy it is to find nations where Bush is still popular.
The three nations where Pew found a majority with confidence in Bush included India, thanks to Bush's willingness to admit it into the club of nuclear-armed nations; and Tanzania and Nigeria, where his confidence ratings reached 60 and 55 percent, respectively. Africa, in fact, has often looked like one giant red state: a 2007 Pew survey found popular support for the U.S. at close to 80 percent across the continent, even in Muslim countries like Mali. The reason? The Bush administration lavished billions on aid to Africa, and to fight HIV/AIDS and other fatal diseases.
Bush also had large minorities in his favor in countries like Poland, where he vowed to upgrade defenses against Russian missiles; Lebanon, where Bush supported the "Cedar Revolution" against pro-Syrian elements; and China, where party leaders welcomed his anti-protectionist stance. And while the most recent Pew poll failed to include Israel and Ukraine, previous studies have indicated that, they, too, placed their trust in president No. 43.