Politics and Understaffing Delay US Funding to the Main UN Budgets

Politics and understaffing are the main reasons the United States has still not paid its outstanding dues to the general budget of the United Nations, after much news coverage of the problem in early October. The UN is experiencing an unprecedented financial crisis that threatens its peacekeeping operations globally and severely hampers its work in … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

Trump’s Misogyny Stands Out During the Impeachment Hearings

Although the first hearings by the Intelligence Committee in the House of Representatives in the Trump impeachment inquiry may be over, one remarkable aspect stands out: the heroic way the female foreign service officers and policy specialists who testified braved raw personal tweets by the president and the White House, often in real time. As … Read more

BOOKS

Nikki Haley Makes Her Choice: She’s a Forever Trumper

“With All Due Respect: Defending America with Grit and Grace,” is framed as a look back at Nikki Haley’s two years as United States ambassador to the United Nations. It’s also not unreasonable to assume she’s just ticking off one more box before an eventual run for high office: Quit your government job, start tweeting … Read more

Destination Kentucky: An Unusual Choice for Kelly Knight Craft’s Security Council Trip

While most countries use their presidency in the United Nations Security Council to visit war zones and pivotal peacekeeping missions around the globe, the United States ambassador, Kelly Knight Craft, is taking her counterparts to her home state of Kentucky in December. The Security Council will be traveling to what is often called the “Horse … Read more

‘Cowboys’ May Be Running the World Food Program, but Donations Keep Coming

The World Food Program may be receiving millions of more donations from the Trump administration than under past presidencies, but its management is skidding around amid complaints of sexual harassment, retaliation, abuse of authority and, most startling, rape, according to a new external survey. Under the leadership of David Beasley, a former South Carolina governor, … Read more

Guess Who Trump Considered for the UN Job in 2016? A Democrat

Tulsi Gabbard, the United States Democratic representative from Hawaii, met with Donald Trump immediately after his election in November 2016. Gabbard became one of the first people to talk to him and his Republican camp at their base in Trump Tower in New York, and the first of a handful of Democrats to do so. … Read more

Where’s Kelly Knight Craft? She Is Neither in Ottawa Nor at the UN

Donald Trump must have known just what he was getting into when he named Kelly Knight Craft to be the United States ambassador to the United Nations. But does Knight Craft understand the humiliating position the president is putting her into? Knight Craft, the soft-spoken wife of a billionaire coal executive from Kentucky, demonstrates scant … Read more

Who Is Kelly Knight Craft? A Podcast to Get to Know the New US Ambassador to the UN

She calls herself a homemaker, a philanthropist and a consultant, but who, exactly, is Kelly Knight Craft, the newly confirmed United States ambassador to the United Nations? This week, UN-Scripted, PassBlue’s new podcast series, features veteran journalist and PassBlue columnist Irwin Arieff, who describes how Knight Craft will handle all the hot files at the … Read more

Pompeo Finds Little Appetite at the UN for His Iran Strategy

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

In the middle of a muggy August afternoon in New York, the United Nations Security Council gathered once more to figure out how to “maintain peace and security” in the Middle East. But the recurring topic always leaves conversations wide open for interpretation by the Council’s 15 members. The concept by Poland as Council president … Read more

Kelly Knight Craft: A ‘Very Impressive Individual’ or ‘Unfit to Serve’?

Kelly Knight Craft

The Senate has confirmed Kelly Knight Craft to be Washington’s top ambassador to the United Nations, even as a key Democrat pronounced her “unfit to serve.” The move ends a seven-month vacancy in one of the country’s most senior diplomatic posts. The July 31 vote on Craft’s nomination was 56 to 34, with 5 Democrats … Read more

Will Democrats Stall Trump’s Nominee for the UN Indefinitely?

After the Senate Foreign Relations Committee just voted to place 13 Trump administration nominees across diverse positions in the State Department, Senate ranking member Robert Menendez is using another nomination as a negotiating chip to demand details on two controversial White House migration pacts with Guatemala and Mexico. Senator Menendez (D-N.J.) is blocking the candidacy … Read more

Trump’s Pick for UN Diplomat in Geneva Vows to Oppose Reproductive Rights and Put America First

Andrew Bremberg

“I am pro-life, I believe that all human life is sacred, and that human life begins at conception,” Andrew Bremberg told members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee recently. Asked if rape victims should have access to abortion, he replied, “I don’t believe that abortion is a moral solution to any problem.” Nominated by President … Read more

Trump’s UN Pick Softens on Climate Change, but Not on Paris Accord

Kelly Knight Craft

Kelly Knight Craft, Donald Trump’s pick to be the next United States ambassador to the United Nations, raised eyebrows in her June 19 Senate confirmation hearing by putting some space between her views on global climate change and those of the president. But Trump needn’t worry that she might end up threatening her boss’s ostrichlike … Read more

Pulling Back the Curtain on the US Mission to the UN

Vice President Pence at the United Nations Security Council on April 10, 2019

The next United States ambassador to the United Nations, which could be Kelly Knight Craft, will arrive at a US mission to the UN that is far diminished in size and stature than the one her immediate predecessor, Nikki Haley, inherited. In the last month, numerous former staff members and high-level personnel from the US … Read more

Trump’s Strong-Arm Cuts Put UN Peacekeepers Out in the Cold

The Trump administration’s unilateral decision to stop paying its full United Nations peacekeeping bills is hanging peacekeeping missions out to dry while creating financial woes for the countries that provide the blue-helmeted troops and police officers, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres is warning. The UN’s member nations owed the peacekeeping operations just under $2 billion in … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

Where Will Trump’s Love for Israel Take Us?

President Trump with Prime Minister Netanyahu at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, May 2017.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, it’s not really “America First.” It’s “Donald Trump First.” Life would no doubt be safer for the rest of us if his administration based its foreign policy on something larger than one person’s personal fortune(s). But Trump policies have never been famous for their altruism and typically … Read more

GEOPOLITICS

Trump Nominates the Current UN Envoy as Ambassador to Egypt

Jonathan R Cohen

Just days after President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt met with President Trump in the White House, receiving an effusive reception, Trump nominated Jonathan R. Cohen, the acting permanent representative of the United States to the United Nations, as ambassador to Egypt. Cohen, who has been a Foreign Service officer since 1986, is from Southern … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

The US Goes ‘Bonkers’ at the UN Women’s Conference

“Hold the line” was the frequent refrain heard during the contentious negotiations swirling around the annual meeting at the United Nations ensuring the rights of women. Delegates from the UN’s 193 countries were urged by conference leaders to remain steadfast against a rising tide of conservative national positions, which included the United States, regarding the … Read more

NIKKI HALEY WATCH

Nikki Haley Revs Up: ‘We’re in the Money’

Nikki Haley at Boeing Plant in South Carolina, May 2013

Two months after leaving the United Nations, Nikki Haley has assembled a political network that is laying the groundwork for a possible presidential run in 2024, or even in 2020 — should her mentor Donald Trump not run. The best thing about it from her point of view? The scheme will enable her to raise … Read more

GOINGS-ON

Heather Nauert, Trump’s Pick for UN Ambassador, Drops Out

Heather Nauert

Heather Nauert, who was nominated by President Trump in early December to succeed Nikki Haley as the United States ambassador to the United Nations, has withdrawn from consideration as of Feb. 16, 2018. Nauert was the chief spokesperson for the State Department from mid-2017 until her nomination in early December. Bloomberg News reported the withdrawal … Read more

 

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