Haley is Still a Star
July 9, 2018
United Nations Charter provides that
the organization is designed to "maintain international peace and security,
... develop friendly relations among nations, ... [and] be a center for
harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends."
Given the fact that many UN member states routinely fail to support these
principles, the task of demanding adherence to the charter has fallen to the
worked under three US Presidents of both political parties, including a number
of years at the United Nations, I will say that the current US ambassador to the
United Nations, Nikki Haley, has done an extraordinary job thus far.
the last year and a half, Haley has spoken up with remarkable clarity. Her work
has resulted in savings of $600
million by avoiding wasteful and duplicative spending in UN
peacekeeping missions. She has highlighted the unfair policy of the United
Nations in dealing with Israel. And she has successfully urged the UN Security
Council to adopt North Korea sanctions.
yet, in his recent opinion
piece on CNN.com, Stephen Schlesinger
asserts that Haley's "star, which was burning so brightly in the first year
of the Trump administration, is beginning to dim significantly in the second
clearly recognizes that during her first year at the United Nations, Haley's
actions earned her great respect. As distinct from many of her predecessors, she
has spoken with great vigor, and succeeded in spreading the message about how
the US views issues considered at the United Nations. In her second year, Haley
has continued to perform the highly significant role she performed in her first
year. Her star most certainly continues to burn brightly.
case that Schlesinger makes for the proposition that Haley's star has dimmed is
not reasonable. He calls attention to the fact that the ambassador was not in
Singapore for the Donald Trump-Kim Jong Un summit or in Jerusalem when the US
Embassy opened there.
her presence at both events would not have been within her area of
responsibility. An ambassador to the United Nations is focused on working with
numerous countries simultaneously in New York. The UN ambassador does not
participate in direct negotiations with individual foreign heads of state,
except when they relate directly to UN affairs.
other words, there was no point for Haley to be in Singapore for the summit
between Trump and Kim. The bilateral items on the agenda in Singapore were not
in her area of responsibility. She made her contribution to US foreign policy on
North Korea by winning passage ofthree
unprecedented multilateral sanctions against North Korea at the UN
was there any point to Haley taking time out from her duties at the United
Nations to make a trip to Jerusalem for the embassy opening. She has applied
herself consistently and with remarkable success to the task of opposing the
unfair treatment of Israel by the current UN majority.
recently, she announced that the United States was
withdrawing from the UN Human Rights Council, which she noted has been
particularly hostile to Israel. This was a decision her staff told me she
strongly advocated behind the scenes. Indeed, one of Haley's great
accomplishments has been to place UN affairs high on the administration's
foreign policy agenda.
further suggests that the appointment of Mike Pompeo as secretary of state and
John Bolton as national security adviser has weakened Haley's position within
there is no doubt that Pompeo and Bolton are more effective than their
predecessors, that does not weaken Haley's ability to win support for the US
position at the United Nations. On the contrary, it strengthens it greatly. The
added cohesiveness of the administration that comes from the like-mindedness of
Pompeo and Bolton gives Haley even more latitude than she had in the first year.
is no reason to assume that Pompeo and Bolton will interfere with the way Haley
discharges her duties at the United Nations. In fact, they are using their
positions to support her work there. This is evident in the international
pressure they are putting on Iran by bringing about economic boycott measures,
which are paralleled by Haley's effort to put complementary pressure on Iran at
the United Nations.
a US deputy representative to the United Nations while Jeane Kirkpatrick served
as our UN ambassador, I saw first-hand what a difference can be made by
principled US leadership at the United Nations.
I am grateful that America once again has found that leadership with Ambassador Nikki Haley.