Washington Free Beacon senior writer Adam Kredo appeared Wednesday night on the One America News Network program “Tipping Point” to discuss efforts by Congress to cut funding to the United Nations after the international body passed an anti-Israel resolution last month.
The Obama administration abstained from voting on a U.N. resolution that condemned Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, allowing it to pass unanimously. Critics see the president’s decision to break with decades of U.S. policy and not veto the measure as a betrayal of the Jewish vote.
The administration’s abstention has received bipartisan backlash, and Republican lawmakers have moved to cut funding to the U.N.
Host Liz Wheeler asked Kredo whether he thought the move to halt funding to the U.N. would actually happen.
“If you asked me that a week ago, I probably would have said no,” Kredo said. “But the United Nations right now is teeing up even more action against Israel. Not Iran, not Syria, but Israel. So I think that it actually is likely that Congress could make a stand.”
Kredo noted that the action to block funding will be backed by the incoming Trump administration and therefore would not be difficult.
“When you focus on things like condemning Israel and trying to destroy our major alliance with the Israelis, there’s going to be repercussions,” he said. “It might be time to get the U.N. in line; in terms of its ideology it’s completely askew.”
Wheeler agreed, saying that although “righteous indignation” is called for, some may say the United States was partially responsible, as it was reportedly one of the “chief architects behind the resolution.”
“The Obama administration had said originally, ‘Look, all we did was abstain from the vote,'” Kredo said. “That’s a very major thing. That’s not a reversal of just the Obama administration’s policies, that’s a reversal of long-standing U.S. policy. It takes just one vote, why not exercise a veto in the Security Council.”
“It became very clear that countries such as Ukraine were hesitant to back this, and understandably so, but the administration personally lobbied in favor of it,” Kredo continued.
The amendment “didn’t just come out of nowhere,” Kredo said. “This amendment was in the making and brewing for some time. The Israelis learned that the Obama administration had a very direct hand in orchestrating this, in writing it. It was their baby, they wanted it, and they made it happen.”
Wheeler said that the administration’s decision is a continuation of Obama’s personal history of abstaining to vote in “moral cases.”
“It’s a lame excuse to say we just abstained, everybody else did the work, when it’s clearly not true,” Kredo said.
“Israel has been a main alliance of the U.S., the frontline in the Middle East, the only democracy in that region,” he said. “It should be our priority to defend our closest ally, not step back into the shadows and let the U.N. run wild with its obsessed focus on Israel.”
“This is the same to me as being an accomplice in a crime,” Wheeler said.
Vice President Joe Biden reportedly made contact with the president of Ukraine to try to get him to vote in favor of the resolution, although he has denied doing so.
“But if you look at the schedule on the State Department, he did, in fact, have something scheduled with the president of the Ukraine,” Wheeler said.
Kredo said that Biden had made contact with his national security adviser, Colin Kahl, who also denied that the vice president lobbied Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.
“I have to take him at his word,” said Kredo, who added that multiple sources and reporters from various continents have given the same account of Biden calling Poroshenko on the matter.
“It’s the same report: Biden called the Ukrainians. Yes, it was on the schedule. Biden’s office claims the U.N. resolution didn’t come up. I find that very suspicious,” Kredo said. “We saw the same thing at the State Department. They denied meeting with the Palestinians. All you had to do was look at the public schedule. Kerry held a meeting with the Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat.”
“I don’t believe in coincidences like this,” Wheeler said.
Wheeler said retribution against the U.N. could still be carried out before President-elect Donald Trump takes office, such as expelling Palestinian diplomats from U.S. soil.
Kredo said he had spoken to Trump advisers and multiple offices in the House and Senate, whose responses held several common possibilities.
“It includes possibly expelling Palestinian diplomats from U.S. soil, it includes limiting relationships with countries that voted in favor of this, having repercussions on the diplomatic side, and, of course, it includes potentially withholding funds from the United Nations,” he said.
Cutting off funds may include withholding money from organizations such as the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, which has been trying to co-opt Jewish holy sites, claiming they do not belong to the people of Israel, Kredo said.
The United States provides about 22 percent of the U.N.’s budget. The House Freedom Caucus will meet on Monday to discuss whether it will decrease U.N. funding or make funding a voluntary contribution that Congress will deliberate every two years, BuzzFeed reported.
“There is a nuanced way to do this, and there is also a way to do it with a sledgehammer,” Kredo said. “It’s just a matter of what Congress decides is in their best interest here.”