Forty-five percent of Americans see China as the greatest enemy of the U.S., more than double the percentage who said so in 2020.
The Gallup poll also finds favorable views of China among U.S. adults falling for the second straight year, putting the figure at a historically low 20%.
The rise in perceptions of China as the United States’ greatest enemy is accompanied by a sharp decline since 2020 in those mentioning Iran (down 15 percentage points to 4%), as well as four-to-five-point declines in mentions of Iraq and North Korea and smaller declines in a handful of other countries.
Perceptions of Russia as the United States’ greatest enemy, now 26%, were essentially unchanged from a year ago when 23% named it. But it is down from 32% who did so in 2019 when it ranked first overall. The 9% of Americans who view North Korea as their country’s greatest enemy is a noticeable turn from previous years when rhetorical tensions, military escalations and missile testing were more elevated. In 2018, 51% named North Korea as the greatest enemy.