That was the message Nikki Haley emailed to scores of members of the United Nations who are weighing whether to vote Thursday in favor of a General Assembly resolution urging the United States to rescind its decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
“As you consider your vote, I want you to know that the President and U.S. take this vote personally,” Haley wrote in an email that was obtained by Foreign Policy. “The President will be watching this vote carefully and has requested I report back on those countries who voted against us. We will take note of each and every vote on this issue.”
Haley said the U.S is not asking other countries to follow its lead, and move their embassies to Jerusalem, “though we think it would be appropriate.”
The U.S. ambassador’s remarks follow President Trump’s Dec. 6 announcement that the United States would recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, reversing nearly seven decades of U.S. foreign policy and shattering the U.N. consensus that the status of Jerusalem would be settled as part of a comprehensive Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.
Trump’s decision drew expressions of condemnation from capitals around the world. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said the president’s decision disqualified Washington as a Middle East mediator, saying “a crazy person wouldn’t accept” the United States as a peace broker after Trump’s announcement.
The tough rhetoric hinted that the United States was weighing retaliating against those who defy America’s wishes. But several diplomats said any such threat would likely be empty as the vast majority of U.N. members, including close allies like Britain and France, are likely to vote yes.
The letter went out a day after the United States vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution, introduced by Egypt, that also urged the United States to reverse course, saying the decision by any government, including the United States, to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would “have no legal effect,” is “null and void and must be rescinded.” The resolutions, which gained the support of all 14 other U.N. Security Council members, left the Americans diplomatic isolated.