BOSTON – A majority of U.S. young adults support sending ground troops to fight Islamic State militants, though fewer than one in five would be willing to serve themselves, according to a Harvard University poll released on Thursday.
Some 60 percent of respondents aged 18 to 29 told Harvard’s Institute of Politics they either “strongly” or “somewhat” supported sending ground troops to combat militants who have seized territory in Syria and Iraq, as well as orchestrated or inspired deadly attacks in California.
Support has risen markedly from 47 percent before the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, in which gunmen and suicide bombers killed 130 people.
Despite their support for sending troops, 85 percent of respondents told pollsters they would “definitely” or “probably” not be willing to join the military. Republican respondents were most willing to serve, with 24 percent responding that they would “definitely” or “strongly consider” joining the armed forces, if they had not already enlisted.
The poll of 2,011 people aged 18 to 29 was conducted Oct. 30 through Nov. 9, before the attack in San Bernardino by a married couple inspired by Islamic State militants who killed 14 people.
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