Mark this down as one of the best speeches of 2017, which truly has become a good year for speeches in general: McCain’s Senate floor speech, Trump’s Poland speech…
…and now, Haley’s UN speech.
There’s a core reason why this wrankles Americans such a great deal. First and foremost, the Israelis get to determine where their capital is. After a bloody war of independence in 1947, two surprise attacks in 1967 and 1973 respectively, the Lebanon conflict in 1982, and a second intafada? Israel has won by the sword what Arab diplomacy has failed to extend.
Secondly, it is the unilateral decision of the United States where it chooses to place its embassy. No nation has the right to demand otherwise. Protest? Perhaps… but the United States has never and will never be dictated to by the world community where and how it shall extend its diplomatic corps — from Tripoli to the modern day.
Perhaps lastly, the amount of international aid extended to both the world community as well as the United Nations itself — a body that sees fit to put rogue regimes on human rights panels but fails to extend even the slightest latitude towards Israel — is a subsidization of the post-Second World War order that the United States carries almost exclusively in a gift to world peace so extraordinary as to be unprecedented.
For that? The United States is treated with contempt by the so-called “world community” — a community it subsidizes, protects, and harbors against international threats such as terrorism, piracy, and violent actors abroad.
Ambassador Haley’s tone was stark and direct. Under no circumstances will the United States be dictated to, much less surrender one iota of sovereignty. Moreover, the tangible angst that many Americans feel about subsidizing a body that works in direct opposition to the Jeffersonian “empire of liberty” strikes many back home as dichotic to the principles of the United Nations writ large. If we are not working for the principles of spreading liberty to the edges of the world, then why is the American taxpayer being forced to finance something working in opposition to everything we believe as Americans?
The answer is somewhat simple. The United Nations at its core function is supposed to facilitate conversation — not facilitate action. Condemning the movement of embassies is obtuse in the extreme, a move meant to exemplify either the powerlessness of the United Nations or the obtuseness of the member states.
Yet if the disrespect shown to the United States in this regard is to be the response to American subsidization — both of the United Nations and the members states directly? Perhaps America needs to independently re-evaluate whether our international investments are worth the exchange?
If Haley brought anything to light, it was that American investment in the world order is sorely underappreciated by the UN.