Nikki Haley, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, delivered a fierce rebuke of the United Nations during Thursday’s emergency General Assembly meeting, accusing the international body of being hostile toward Israel and pledging not to back down from President Donald Trump’s pledge to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
Haley charged the U.N. with disproportionately attacking Israel and said that the organization’s stance has a dire impact not only on Israel, but on the world at large.
“It’s a wrong that undermines the credibility of this institution,” she said. “And that, in turn, is harmful for the entire world.”
The ambassador went on to speak about Israel’s right to defend “its own survival as a nation” and said that Israel stands up for the “ideals of freedom and human dignity” — values that she charged the U.N. is “supposed to be about.”
The more controversial portion of the speech, though, focused on the fact that the U.S. is the “single largest contributor” to the U.N., something that Haley indicated could be in danger if the vote doesn’t go America’s way.
“We’ll be honest with you. When we make generous contributions to the U.N. we also have a legitimate expectation that our goodwill is recognized and respected,” she said. “When a nation is singled out for attack in this organization, that nation is disrespected … that nation is asked to pay for the privilege of being disrespected.”
Haley continued, “In the case of the United States, we are asked to pay more than anyone else for that dubious privilege.”
In the end, she said that the U.S. has an obligation to its people to spend resources in more productive ways if and when it is deemed no longer in the country’s interest. She said America won’t forget the emergency session, but also noted that Trump’s Jerusalem decision doesn’t change America’s openness to a two-state solution or any other final status of the debated city.
Still, the U.S. won’t be wavering in its Jerusalem decision.
“America will put our embassy in Jerusalem. That is what the American people want us to do and it is the right thing to do,” she said. “No vote in the United Nations will make any difference in that.”