Posted on May 20, 2013 in Arab American Institute

When American policy makers discuss Iran, the focus is on Israel, as if that were the only issue to consider. In reality, the Islamic Republic of Iran is not only a concern for Americans and Israelis. It is also a growing concern for people across the Arab and Muslim Worlds.

In "Looking at Iran: The Rise and Fall of Iran in Public Opinion," James Zogby examines how in just six years Iran has experienced a precipitous decline in popularity among Arabs and Muslims. Based on brand new polling in 20 Arab and Muslim countries, this book reveals:

  • the degree of Iran's fall from favor during the past decade. Once praised for its defiance of the West, now it is increasingly seen as a meddlesome provocateur;
  • the role played by Iran's involvement in Iraq, Bahrain and Syria in alienating Arab public opinion - with Syria being the "nail in the coffin" of Iran's popularity;
  • the growth of a worrisome Sunni/Shia divide which threatens the unity of several Arab and Muslim countries;
  • how Iran's nuclear program, once only the concern of governments, is now opposed by publics in almost every Arab and Muslim country; and
  • how the Obama Administration's lower profile in the Middle East and "leading from behind" has actually improved US standing in Arab public opinion.

In preparing this eBook, ZRS surveyed 20,051 citizens in 20 countries: 17 Arab countries (Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Sudan, Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, UAE, Oman, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia) and three non-Arab countries (Turkey, Azerbaijan, and Pakistan). "Looking at Iran" includes, in an Appendix, a full report on the results from each country.

Purchase a copy at the iTunes store

Purchase a print version of the book

AAI maintains an extensive and comprehensive archive of Zogby Research Services and Zogby International polls on Arab, Arab American, and U.S. opinion covering a wide range of issues.


 Below is a list of book events:



Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (March 5, 2013)


Detroit Economic Club (May 9, 2013)

The Commonwealth Club of California, San Francisco (May 29, 2013)

James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, Rice University (May 30, 2013)


Below are a number of press articles covering "Looking at Iran." 

Upcoming Appearance on C-SPAN BookTV (Sunday, May 26)

James Zogby, “The Rise and Fall of Iran in Arab and Muslim Public Opinion.” Arab American Institute, March 11, 2013.

Jim Zogby Radio Interview “Iran Losing Friends In Middle East.” WDET, Detroit, May 8, 2013

Marc Lynch, “Tehran Tanking.” Foreign Policy Magazine, March 7, 2013

Katelyn Fossett, “Poll Finds Mounting Hostility Among Arabs towards Iran.” Inter Press Service. March 6, 2013

Jim Zogby Op-Ed “James Zogby: Iranians quickly wearing out their welcome in the neighborhood.” Detroit Free Press, May 5, 2013

Barbara Slavin, “Poll: Sectarianism, Syria Drive Negative Image of Iran.” Al-Monitor, March 5, 2013



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