Four out of 5 Americans think Pak knew of Osama hideout

Washington: Reflecting the anti-Pakistan mood prevailing in the US after the killing of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, a latest opinion poll has said at least four out of every five Americans think that the Pakistani establishment had knowledge of the hideout of the top al-Qaeda leader.

"Americans overwhelmingly believe top Pakistani officials knew Osama bin Laden`s whereabouts and strongly oppose further US aid to the country where the top terrorist was found," Rasmussen said in a statement after its new national telephone survey.

The poll showed that 84 per cent of American adults think it is at least somewhat likely that high-level officials in Pakistan government knew where bin Laden was hiding. That includes 57 per cent who say it is very likely they knew.

Only nine per cent believe it is not likely that Pakistan knew.

Just 15 per cent of Americans say the United States should continue military and financial aid to Pakistan. Sixty three per cent say that aid should not continue, while 22 per cent are not sure, Rasmussen said.

Further, only five per cent of adults now regard Pakistan as an ally of the US, down from 15 per cent in August of last year. Twenty six per cent view Pakistan as an enemy, although that is down from 31 per cent in the previous survey.

Now the majority — 61 per cent — rate Pakistan as somewhere in between an ally and an enemy, the poll showed.

Rasmussen said these doubts perhaps help to explain why just eight per cent think the United States should have taken permission from Pakistan before it launched the secret mission against bin Laden within Pakistan`s borders.

Seventy two per cent say that permission was not necessary, while 20 per cent are not sure.

The telephonic survey of 1,000 adults was conducted on May 4-5 by Rasmussen Reports.