A strong majority of the international community defied U.S. President Donald Trump today, despite veiled threats from the White House, by voting overwhelmingly to condemn Trump's recent controversial decision to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.
At a United Nations General Assembly vote, 128 nations voted in favor of the condemnation, including close American allies Britain, France, Afghanistan and Iraq, and only nine against. Thirty-five nations abstained.
Prior to the vote, Trump and U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley sent a strong warning to the international community, implying that generous American foreign funding could be cut for nations that vote against the U.S.
"We'll be honest with you. When we make generous contributions to the U.N., we also have a legitimate expectation that our good will is recognized and respected," Haley said just ahead of the vote. "We have an obligation to demand more for our investment."
Trump said Wednesday, "All these nations that take our money and then vote against us at the Security Council or the assembly, they take hundreds of millions of dollars and billions of dollars and they vote against us... Well, we’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us, we’ll save a lot. We don’t care."
The representatives of several countries, generally antagonists to the U.S., also spoke ahead of the vote, both to condemn the U.S. stance on Jerusalem and the strong-arm tactics of Trump and Haley. "The world is not for sale," the Venezuelan representative said.
Wednesday Code and Dagger posited that Egypt would be particularly worth watching as a test case, considering the nation authored a related U.N. resolution against the U.S. earlier this week but also receives hundreds of millions in U.S. foreign aid for economic development and security. That nation, along with many of its Arab neighbors, voted against the U.S. today.
The only nations to vote with the U.S. on the resolution were Israel, Guatemala, Honduras, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and Togo. Longtime American partners Canada and Australia were among the abstentions.
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