UN scorched by Haley, Israel as member states shield Hamas from condemnation

U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley and her Israeli counterpart blasted the United Nations for its failure Thursday to condemn rocket attacks by Palestinian terror group Hamas.

“We can’t talk about peace in the Middle East until we can agree on a basic condemnation of Hamas and its terrorism,” Haley said late Thursday. “The U.N. had a chance to do that today, and it failed.”

“You should be ashamed of yourselves, wait until you have to deal with terrorism in your own countries," Israeli Ambassador Danny Danon told the chamber. "Your silence in the face of evil reveals your true colors."

The U.S.-led resolution would have condemned Hamas for “repeatedly firing rockets into Israel and for inciting violence, thereby putting civilians at risk.” It would also have demanded that Hamas “and other militant actors, including Palestinian Islamic Jihad,” cease all provocative and violent actions; and condemn Hamas efforts to construct tunnels to infiltrate Israel and launch rockets into civilian areas.


But after a procedural move by Kuwait and Bolivia, the body adopted a rule that meant the resolution needed a two-thirds majority to be adopted. The resolution ultimately picked up a plurality of 87 votes in support and 57 against -- with 33 abstentions. But it was not enough to meet the two-thirds threshold.

Ahead of the vote, Haley accused those pushing for that threshold of double standards and noted that the U.N. had never once condemned Hamas by name -- despite passing 700 resolutions blasting Israel.

"That, more than anything else, is a condemnation of the United Nations itself," she said.

She also posed the question of the resolution in stark terms: “The question before us now is whether the U.N. thinks terrorism is acceptable if, and only if, it is directed against Israel.”

Noting Hamas’ control of Gaza since 2007, she said that Hamas had turned it into a police state with arbitrary arrests and torture of political prisoners. She used her time at the General Assembly podium to challenge the Arab states.

"I want to take a personal moment, and ask my Arab brothers and sisters: Is the hatred that strong? Is the hatred toward Israel so strong that you'll defend a terrorist organization?" she asked. “One that directly causes harm to the Palestinian people? Isn’t it time to let that go?”

But the calls by Haley and Danon were not enough to get the resolution through. The ambassador for Saudi Arabia was fierce in his criticism of Israel.

"Israel is in contravention of all Security Council and General Assembly resolutions," its representative said. "Israel has no respect for this organization of which it is a member."

Danon noted that getting 87 countries to condemn Hamas was a sign of an “unprecedented coalition” at the U.N. to end anti-Israel bias:

“The broad support from the world demonstrates the changes we have made in the UN. With the support of these countries, we will continue our work in the UN against Hamas terrorism. I thank Ambassador Haley for her close cooperation in fighting for the truth that led to the formation of an unprecedented coalition for Israel and against terrorism.”

Had it passed, the resolution would have marked a major achievement for Haley, who departs from her role as U.N. ambassador in January and has made calling out anti-Israel bias one of the central goals of her time at the U.N.

President Trump confirmed Friday he will nominate State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert to succeed Haley. Nauert is likely to continue the push to curb anti-Israel bias at the U.N. if confirmed.

Fox News' Ben Evansky contributed to this report.