Nikki Haley, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, addressed the U.N. General Assembly this morning, taking its members to task for considering a vote to condemn the United States’ decision to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Here are some key excerpts from her powerful remarks, which focused on how the U.S. contributes far more to the U.N. and to international stability than any other nation.
“The United States is, by far, the single largest contributor to the United Nations and its agencies,” she stated. “When we make generous contributions to the U.N., we also have a legitimate expectation that our goodwill is recognized and respected. When a nation is singled out for attack in this organization, that nation is disrespected. What’s more, that nation is asked to pay for the privilege of being disrespected. In the case of the United States, we are asked to pay more than anyone else for that dubious privilege.”
She noted that the U.S. government, unlike many other states represented in the U.N., is held accountable by its people and must answer to them for the way in which its resources are used. Haley also pushed back against the notion that the decision to move the embassy will be harmful to Middle Eastern peace efforts:
The decision was in accordance to U.S. law dating back to 1995 . . . The decision does not prejudge any final status issues, including Jerusalem’s boundaries. The decision does not preclude a two-state solution, if the parties agree to that. The decision does nothing to harm peace efforts. Rather, the president’s decision reflects the will of the American people, and our right as a nation to choose the location of our embassy.
Haley closed with an emphatic denunciation of the idea that the members of the U.N. can attempt to shame the U.S. into deviating from the will of its people and from what it believes to be right:
Instead, there is a larger point to make. The United States will remember this day, in which it was singled out for attack in the General Assembly for the very act of exercising our right as a sovereign nation. We will remember it when we are called upon to once again make the world’s largest contribution to the United Nations. And we will remember it when so many countries come calling on us, as they so often do, to pay even more and to use our influence for their benefit. 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. No vote in the United Nations will make any difference on that. But this vote will make a difference on how Americans look at the U.N., and on how we look at countries who disrespect us in the U.N. And this vote will be remembered.
Here’s a video of her remarks, courtesy of ABC News: