U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley speaking outside the United Nation’s General Assembly headquarters in New York on Monday. (Screen shot via YouTube)

Nikki Haley had a busy week making her public debut as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations under President Trump. Through a series of public events, Haley made it clear that she was opposed to numerous aspects of the U.N.

First, on Monday, Haley led a boycott against upcoming U.N. talks on nuclear disarmament. The Progressive reports:

The agreement to negotiate such a ban was passed late last year by a wide margin in the most significant development in nuclear disarmament since the end of the Cold War.

But just as the proceedings were getting underway, U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley, supported by Britain and France, staged a protest outside the General Assembly, along with representatives of eighteen other countries.

“You know me as the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., but first and foremost I’m a mom,” Haley announced. “As a mom, as a daughter, there’s nothing I want more for my family than a world without nuclear weapons. But we have to be realistic . . . today when you see those walking into the General Assembly to create a nuclear weapons ban, you have to ask yourself, are they looking out for their people? Do they really understand the threats that we have?”

The United States and the other eight nuclear weapon states are all boycotting the negotiations, along with NATO states (with the exception of the Netherlands), Australia, South Korea, and Japan.

The boycott was, The Progressive notes, initially announced by the Obama administration last fall.

“Leaders of the effort include Austria, Ireland, Mexico, Brazil, South Africa and Sweden, supported by hundreds of nonprofit organizations,” PRI adds. “[Obama’s] administration strongly encouraged NATO allies to vote against this year’s U.N. negotiations, saying a ban would obstruct cooperation to respond to nuclear threats from adversaries.”

Haley then spoke to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee Monday evening, stating: “For anyone that says you can’t get anything done at the U.N., they need to know there’s a new sheriff in town.”

Then, on Wednesday, Haley publicly criticized the U.N. Human Rights Council during her first speech to the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. The New York Times reports:

[Haley] described the United States on Wednesday as the “moral conscience” of the world, and she dismissed the United Nations Human Rights Council as “so corrupt” without offering evidence. …

She briefly channeled her boss, President Trump, by describing the United Nations as “basically a club” that needed to be disrupted.

“The fact is, a wave is building throughout the world,” Ms. Haley said. “It’s a wave of populism that is challenging institutions like the United Nations, and shaking them to their foundations.”

Exactly how Ms. Haley proposes to disrupt the world body is not clear, beyond slashing American financial support, as Mr. Trump signaled with his budget outline. She declined to say how deep those cuts would turn out to be, saying she was in discussions with members of Congress who ultimately control the purse strings.

“This is a time, in short, to show the people reasons to support the U.N.,” she said.

It’s a crucial time for Haley, who will assume the monthly presidency of the U.N.’s Security Council in April.

“The problem is the whole administration is still in the making. They don’t have many officials who are responsible for policy,” one senior diplomat on the Security Council told the Huffington Post. “There’s a huge difference between what they want and what they do.”

“There is a gap between [Haley’s] tough public posturing, designed for domestic consumption, and her positions within the U.N.,” a second Security Council senior diplomat stated. “She will have to close this visible gap.”

—Posted by Emma Niles

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