Only an hour after the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution that demanded the nation of Israel immediately cease building settlements in occupied territories, President-elect Trump issued a response via his favorite media vehicle.
As to the U.N., things will be different after Jan. 20th.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2016
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu referred to the vote as a “shameful blow against Israel” and excoriated current U.S. president Barack Obama, saying that Obama had staged a “shameful ambush” against the Middle East’s only fully-democratic nation in spearheading a United States “non-vote”. The United States had the ability to veto the resolution but refused to do so. This Obama administration decision marked a departure from a longstanding United States policy of Israeli support at the United Nations.
Throwing fuel on the fire, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry suggested that Israel’s West Bank foray was responsible for “spawning terrorism” after the votes were tallied.
Before the vote was scheduled to take place, President-elect Trump put pressure on Obama to veto the resolution in a statement released by his transition team.
“As the United States has long maintained, peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians will only come through direct negotiations between the parties, and not through the imposition of terms by the United Nations. This puts Israel in a very poor negotiating position and is extremely unfair to all Israelis.”
The president-elect’s statement, however, fell on deaf ears.
Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations for the next 20 days, explained the Obama Administration’s decision in a note to the council, censuring Netanyahu for Israel’s current settlement expansion and stating that it was at odds with Netanyahu’s stated desire for a two-state solution.