Saturday, February 25, 2017

Nikki Haley Says US Won't Be Quiet on Syria Chemical Weapons, Russia Vows Veto

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, February 24 – Before an impending vote on Syria chemical weapons in the UN Security Council, US Ambassador Nikki Haley said, "People died because of this, and the United States isn't going to be quiet." Video here, transcript below.  

Russia's Deputy Ambassador Vladimir Safronkov called it a provocation and vowed to veto the draft. Video here. 
Haley, transcribed: "I think what we saw in there was pretty amazing, because you had unity in the fact that we needed to be concerned about chemical weapons being used in Syria. You had an overwhelming vote to say we need an investigative mechanism that would prove that these chemical weapons were being done by the Syrian regime. Now you’ve got the results that have come out, and people don’t like what the results are. It is ridiculous. How much longer is Russia going to continue to babysit and make excuses for the Syrian regime? People have died by being suffocated to death. That’s barbaric.

"So what we’re going to do is – we were given all these reasons on why we shouldn’t propose the resolution. We were given all these reasons on why the timing was wrong. That is exactly why the timing is right. That is exactly why this resolution needs to happen. Whether people are going to veto it or not, you are either for chemical weapons or you’re against it. People died because of this, and the United States isn’t going to be quiet. Thank you." Watch this site.
On US inauguration day on January 20 at the US Mission to the UN the photos of Obama, Biden, Kerry and Samantha Power came down. As of February 24 they have not been replaced.

  But as elsewhere an "Alt USUN" Twitter account continues in a parallel online universe the views of Power, most recently promoting an AFP spoon-fed story about the UN Security Council's Syria chemical weapons draft resolution and calling it the "first test of US influence over Russia." Apparently in this view, if Russia casts a veto, it's a win for US Power. Call it a revived red line.
  Meanwhile, here is the video Inner City Press put on Twitter of Nikki Haley saying the draft will be put to vote to see “which countries have an excuse for chemical weapons.” 
@NikkiHaley says US worked on  draft & will put to vote to see “which countries have an excuse for chemical weapons.”

  The account previously called out new Ambassador Nikki Haley for only attending three of 13 UN Security Council meetings, on Ukraine, ISIS and Israel - Palestine.
  Fair enough. But how many meetings did Samantha Power attend? And after the Israel - Palestine meeting Nikki Haley took questions at the Security Council stakeout, not pre-screened by Power's spokesman Kurtis Cooper - who remains at the US Mission, tweeting, along with many others.
  In fact, Isobel Coleman who did nothing when the DC-based whistleblower protection group Government Accountability Project wrote to her about the UN's eviction of the investigative Press, here, still as of February 17 lists herself as the US representative on UN reform. Is it true?
   In the UN itself, Obama and Hillary Clinton nominee Jeffrey Feltman has gotten his UN contract extended. Inner City Press first reported, from multiple sources, that Feltman sought this so that his UN pension would hit the five year vesting dateline. The UN's holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric called Inner City Press' question, and by implication Inner City Press, "despicable." Or is that, deplorable?
  Meanwhile Voice of America, which was shown under the US Freedom of Information Act to have asked the UN to throw out the investigative Press, has now asked about Jared Kushner (video via here) and asked the UK about Nikki Haley's inexperience. Like we said, an alternative universe.

  Other former State Department officials like Bathsheba Crocker wring their hands about changes in foreign policy. But what did they do, when the UN killed 10,000 plus people in Haiti with cholera? They had their time to try to improve the UN, and largely failed. It's time to #MoveOn.