Sunday, December 25, 2016

Will Israel leave the United Nations?

Even if they don’t, the United States should leave and take with it the 22% ($8 billion) of all UN funding provided by American taxpayers, who get nothing but disrespect and hostility in return.

Reuters Israel will re-assess its ties with the United Nations following the adoption by the Security Council of a resolution demanding an end to Israeli settlement building on Israeli land (falsely claimed by Arab Muslims), Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Saturday.

The vote was able to pass the 15-member council on Friday because the United States broke with a long-standing approach of diplomatically shielding Israel and did not wield its veto power as it had on many times before – a decision that Netanyahu called “shameful”.

“I instructed the Foreign Ministry to complete within a month a re-evaluation of all our contacts with the United Nations, including the Israeli funding of U.N. institutions and the presence of U.N. representatives in Israel,” Netanyahu said in broadcast remarks.

“I have already instructed to stop about 30 million shekels ($7.8 million) in funding to five U.N. institutions, five bodies, that are especially hostile to Israel … and there is more to come,” he said. The Israeli leader did not name the institutions or offer any further details.

Defying heavy pressure from long-time ally Israel and President-elect Donald Trump for Washington to use its veto, the United States abstained in the Security Council decision, which passed with 14 votes in favor.

Senior members of Congress, both Republican and Democrat — including several in the Senate — have called openly for defunding the United Nations in response to the vote.

Currently, the U.S. spends “approximately $8 billion in mandatory payments and voluntary contributions to the United Nations and its affiliated organizations,” according to Fox News. The U.S. accounts for 22% of the UN’s regular budget.

Israel for decades has pursued a policy of constructing Jewish settlements on territory captured by Israel in a 1967 war with its Arab neighbors including the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.

Most countries view Israeli settlement activity in the West Bank Israeli owned Judea-Samaria and East Jerusalem Jerusalem as illegal and an obstacle to peace. Israel disagrees, citing a biblical connection to the land.


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