On December 24th, using an “abstain” vote, President Obama threw Israel under the bus by abstaining from a vote for UN Resolution 2334 at the UN Security Council. The USA holds one of the five permanent positions on the Security Council and has the power to veto resolutions. They did not and Israel was slapped with what amounts to a restraining order by the 14 remaining members. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was furious.
“They are spitting at us,” Netanyahu has told colleagues behind closed doors, Channel 2 news reported. “We will respond forcefully.”
Netanyahu held a 40-minute meeting with US Ambassador Dan Shapiro on Sunday evening, having summoned the envoy to explain why the US abstained in the vote on Resolution 2334, enabling it to pass 14-0, rather than vetoing it. He had earlier summoned the envoys of the 12 nations with representatives in Israel that voted for the resolution for a dressing-down at the Foreign Ministry.
As Total Patriot reported yesterday, House Republicans also expressed their displeasure with Obama’s act, indicating they were thinking of defunding their portion of the UN. The USA currently provides 22% of the budget for the UN Security Council.
President-Elect Donald Trump threw his weight around as well, making calls to Egypt following the resolution. The Washington Post reports that Trump called Egypt and negotiated a ‘ceasefire’ of sorts until Trump gets in office and has the authority to negotiate.
A statement from the Egyptian President said the two men spoke by phone early Friday and agreed on “the importance of giving a chance to the new American administration to deal in a comprehensive way with the different aspects of the Palestinian issue with the aim of achieving a comprehensive and a final resolution.”
As the resolution was adopted under Chapter 6 of the UN Charter, it is non-binding and can not be forced on Israel. Chapter 6 deals with Settlements and Disputes, while Chapter 7 deals with Threats to the Peace, Breaches of the Peace, and Acts of Aggression, which would be the Chapter the resolution would need to be filed under to have consequences for Israel.
The Hill reports Israel will be giving the directive on Wednesday to build 600 additional units in East Jerusalem, part of a plan for 5,600 additional homes already in motion.
Netanyahu also convened with 12 of the countries who were part of the Security Council to discuss the continued settling of lands Israel captured during the 1967 War, a defensive war where Israel clashed with Jordan and Egypt. In the ceasefire that was signed following the 6-day war, Israel expanded its footprint significantly capturing Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan, and the Golan Heights from Syria.
The UN Resolution 2334 would seek to limit Israel’s expansion and give other countries the ability to sue Israel for building more homes in this territory.