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Assessing Anti-American Sentiment Through Social Media Analysis

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Technical Report

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Naval Postgraduate School Monterey United States

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This thesis examines the history of anti-Americanism as both a passing sentiment and an enduring ideology and how both can be detrimental to American security and future prosperity. It further explores the analytical methods for studying anti-Americanism, to include classic polling and social media analysis in an attempt to determine the reliability of each. This work attempts to bring to light the underlying motives for anti-American beliefs by examining relationships between explicit American actions in Pakistan and Japan and variations in anti-American sentiment. The results show that drone strikes in Pakistan and large-scale military exercises involving U.S. and Japanese forces both can cause significant fluctuations in the number of positive and negative tweets directed toward America. I argue that the mixed and negative messages represented in Twitter are due in a large part to a lack of U.S. transparency while conducting both drone strikes in Pakistan and military shows of force in and around Japan.

Subject Categories:

  • Sociology and Law

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