When it comes to public opinion of the relations between the U.S. and Germany, Americans generally have positive views of the relationship. Germans, on the other hand, tell a far different story.
In a new Pew Research Center survey, 64 percent of German respondents said they believe relations between the U.S. and Germany were bad in 2019. That sentiment is a sharp divergence from American respondents, where 75 percent thought relations between the two countries were good in 2019. Overall, in the last three years of the Trump administration, the views of Germans and Americans have only polarized further.
Several factors cited by Pew point to why Americans and Germans have conflicting views on the countries’ relationship. For one, another survey shows Americans are far more likely to believe their country should defend NATO allies against Russia, while 60 percent of Germans feel the opposite about their country. Americans are also more likely to say military force is sometimes necessary to maintain world order, with 78 percent compared to 47 percent. As for U.S. military bases in Germany, the German public is mixed on their importance while most Americans agree the bases are purposeful.
Still, while torn on the U.S. in terms of their military views, Germans are much more likely to see the U.S. as one of their top foreign policy partners than Americans are to see Germany as a top partner. The Pew survey shows 42 percent of Germans believe the U.S. is a top partner while only 13 percent of Americans see Germany in the same light.