US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley (AP/Mary Altaffer) (AP/Mary Altaffer)
Nikki Haley

US ambassador Nikki Haley slammed the UN for its “breathtaking double standards,” vowing to fight the bias against Israel. 

US Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Nikki Haley lambasted the UN Security Council (UNSC) for its obsession with Israel while failing to address the real dangers facing the world.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday after the UNSC’s monthly meeting on the Middle East, Haley said the focus on Israel “was a bit strange.”

“The Security Council is supposed to discuss how to maintain international peace and security. But at our meeting on the Middle East, the discussion was not about Hezbollah’s illegal build-up of rockets in Lebanon. It was not about the money and weapons Iran provides to terrorists. It was not about how we defeat ISIS [the Islamic State]. It was not about how we hold Bashar al-Assad accountable for the slaughter of hundreds and thousands of civilians. No, instead, the meeting focused on criticizing Israel, the one true democracy in the Middle East,” Haley charged.

“I’m here to say the United States will not turn a blind eye to this anymore. I am here to underscore the ironclad support of the United States for Israel. I’m here to emphasize the United States is determined to stand up to the UN’s anti-Israel bias,” she declared.

Haley vowed that the US, under the Trump administration, will never “repeat the terrible mistake of Resolution 2334 and allow one-sided Security Council resolutions to condemn Israel. Instead, we will push for action on the real threats we face in the Middle East.” She was referring to a UNSC resolution passed in December that condemned Israel for its presence in Judea and Samaria. The Obama administration essentially supported the motion.

While the US supports efforts to bring peace between Israel and the Palestinians, the UNSC’s and the UN’s General Assembly’s “outrageously biased resolutions only make peace harder to attain by discouraging one of the parties from going to the negotiating table,” she said.

The UN’s obsession with Israel is unbelievable, she declared.

‘The Double Standards are Breathtaking’

“Incredibly, the UN Department of Political Affairs has an entire division devoted to Palestinian affairs. Imagine that. There is no division devoted to illegal missile launches from North Korea. There is no division devoted to the world’s number one state-sponsor of terror, Iran,” she charged, saying that this “prejudiced approach to Israeli-Palestinian issues does the peace process no favors,” and even worse, “it bears no relationship to the reality of the world around us.”

“The double standards are breathtaking,” she slammed the UN. “Just a few days ago, the United States sought unsuccessfully to have the Security Council condemn a terrorist attack to Israel, where the terrorist opened fire on people waiting for a bus and then stabbed others. The Security Council would not hesitate to condemn an attack like that in any other country. But not for Israel. The statement was blocked. And that’s downright shameful.”

“Israel exists in a region where others call for its complete destruction and in a world where anti-Semitism is on the rise. These are threats that we should discuss at the United Nations as we continue working toward a comprehensive agreement that would end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” she said.

Despite the UN’s bias, “there is some good news,” she highlighted. “Israel’s place in the world is changing. Israel is building up new diplomatic relationships. More and more countries recognize how much Israel contributes to the world. They are recognizing that Israel is a beacon of stability in a troubled region, and that Israel is at the forefront of innovation, entrepreneurship, and technological discovery.”

“It is the UN’s anti-Israel bias that is long overdue for change. The United States will not hesitate to speak out against these biases in defense of our friend and ally, Israel.

I will say that I think we saw maybe a slightly different tone in the meeting, but we will have to see how it goes,” she concluded.

Bias by the Numbers

During her confirmation hearing at the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee last month, Haley expressed outstanding support for Israel.

She slammed the UN’s “outrageous bias against our close ally Israel.”

She backed up her charge with numbers: In the recently concluded General Assembly session, “the UN adopted 20 resolutions against Israel and only six targeting the rest of the world’s countries combined.”

Over the past 10 years, she added, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) “has passed 62 resolutions condemning the reasonable actions Israel takes to defend its security. Meanwhile, the world’s worst human rights abusers in Syria, Iran, and North Korea received far fewer condemnations. This cannot continue.”

The US contributes 22 percent of the UN’s budget, and Haley questioned whether such a sizable investment was worthwhile.

“We are a generous nation,” Haley said. “But we must ask ourselves what good is being accomplished by this disproportionate contribution. Are we getting what we pay for?”

Haley said she would focus on “fixing” the UN and agreed that money should not continue to be funneled into programs that don’t work.

By: Max Gelber, United with Israel