Donald Trump’s attempt to make sovereign nations kowtow to America and support his crazy decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel has failed.
The United Nations has voted overwhelmingly to condemn the US decision to declare Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel
And Trump has shown yet again that his word cannot be trusted.
The Guardian reported on his first speech to the UN in September of this year where he said this:
Strong, sovereign nations let diverse countries with different values, different cultures and different dreams not just coexist but work side by side on the basis of mutual respect.”
Fast forward three months and the world was told to oppose the US decision at their collective peril. So much for mutual respect. Again from the Guardian:
Hayley’s implicit threat was that countries that defied the US president would face consequences. A few hours later, Trump made explicit what is implicit in America First diplomacy. If the UN voted against the US, he forecast that the US would “save a lot”.
“We don’t care. But this isn’t like it used to be where they could vote against you and then you pay them hundreds of millions of dollars. We’re not going to be taken advantage of any longer,” Trump said.
If soft power, in the words of Joseph Nye, “is the ability to get what you want through attraction rather than coercion,” then Trump has become the ultimate exponent of hard-power diplomacy.
And it failed. Although Trump’s political goals were clearly domestic rather than international. Again from the Guardian:
But there has been something qualitatively different about the US treatment of fellow member states over Jerusalem. The line of attack was so populist, so redolent of a protection racket, that it can only be aimed at a domestic audience rather than an external one. As countless diplomats have warned in the past 24 hours, it will also be counter-productive, only deepening US isolation.
Despite the warnings, the UN general assembly voted by a huge majority to reject Trump’s unilateral recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on Thursday, with Canada reportedly switching from supporting the US to abstaining in protest at the attempt to strong-arm states.
Even before the vote, Bolivia’s UN ambassador, Sacha Llorenty, advised Haley that the first name she should write down in her black book was Bolivia. For many countries, especially in the Middle East and Latin America, it will be a badge of honour to have defied a super power.
Countries normally close to the US, such as Egypt, France and Saudi Arabia, had to take a discreet step away. They had their own courts of public opinion. When the roll call was taken, only nine countries – most with populations counted in the tens of thousands – backed the superpower. Haley’s notebook was filled with the names of 128 countries that had ignored her threats.
The resolution was supported by 128 nations, with 35 abstaining and only 9 opposing. New Zealand voted for the resolution as did the United Kingdom, Russia, China and Saudi Arabia. Canada and Australia abstained.
Those that voted against the resolution included the following:
The only supporters apart from Israel were small Pacific and Central American nations.
No doubt Trump will now carry through with his threat to cut funding for the UN and aid funding for nations that decided to stand up to the world’s largest bully nation.
His stance will go down well with the unhinged Fox news back at home. Anyone with any appreciation of the nuances of International relations will be aghast.
Meanwhile National’s pollster has engaged in this glaring piece of pro Israeli propaganda, describing what have been very civilised requests to Lorde not to play in Israel as being “nasty” and claiming that the movement to culturally isolate Israel is wrong because opponents are not simultaneously opposing all human rights breaches everwhere. Israel deserves all the criticism it is getting. It has thumbed its nose at UN resolution after UN resolution, breached all sorts of International Law provisions through its forced settlement and annexation of Palestinian land and the terrorising of the Palestinian people. Anyone with a heart and a mind should be opposing what is happening.
And if Lorde wanted to make a bold statement in support of human rights she could do no better than to cancel her concert.