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The United States Is Losing Allies On Gaza

Above photo: U.N. General Assembly adopted a resolution on “Protection of civilians and upholding legal and humanitarian obligations” in Gaza on Tuesday. UN Photo/Loey Felipe.

The U.S. again voted against a Gaza ceasefire on Tuesday.

But this time a slew of U.S. allies abandoned Washington in the U.N. General Assembly.

The United States is facing growing domestic and international opposition to its support for the ongoing genocide in Gaza.

Defying the U.S. and Israel, the U.N. General Assembly voted on Tuesday, 153 nations in favor with 10 against, and 23 abstentions for an immediate end to the killing.

Most significantly, the vote on Tuesday showed a slew of U.S. allies abandoning Washington on Gaza.

It is the second time in the past six weeks that the Assembly voted for a permanent ceasefire.  On Oct. 27, the vote was 120 in favor, 14 against and 45 abstentions.

After witnessing six more weeks of genocide, 33 more nations — including several who almost always automatically side with the U.S. — this time evidently had enough and voted against Washington and in favor of an immediate halt to the slaughter.

Some U.S. allies that had abstained on Oct. 27, like Australia, Albania, Canada, Denmark, Greece and India, on Tuesday found the strength to oppose the U.S. to vote in favor of a ceasefire.

Three Eyes Statement

The prime ministers of three of the Five Eyes nations  — Australia, Canada and New Zealand (which vote in favor both times) — issued a joint statement about their yes vote:

“In defending itself, Israel must respect international humanitarian law. Civilians and civilian infrastructure must be protected. We are alarmed at the diminishing safe space for civilians in Gaza. The price of defeating Hamas cannot be the continuous suffering of all Palestinian civilians.”

Trumpeted by the Murdoch press, the Australian rightwing is flaying Prime Minister Anthony Albanese alive for standing up to Israel and the U.S.

The Australian newspaper quoted opposition leaders saying Albanese did it only to avoid losing votes to the Greens; the Israeli ambassador to Australia saying Albanese’s vote “will embolden Hamas;” and Opposition defense spokesperson Andrew Hastie slamming the government’s “provocative” vote.

The centrist Sydney Morning Herald explained that Albanese and Foreign Minister Penny Wong appeared to be so worried about the vote that they took their decision in “secret,” keeping most of the cabinet and Labor MPs in the dark.  The paper said the Labor Party had both Jewish and Muslim ministers and voters to cater to.

The Australian Greens leader said it was too little, too late.

Albanese faces a new test, however, as the United States Navy has asked Australia to send a war ship to the Middle East, something that could contradict a vote for a ceasefire.

Canada Too

Global News reported that Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly said Tuesday on Parliament Hill:

“We must recognize that what is unfolding before our eyes will only enhance the cycle of violence. This will not lead to the durable defeat of Hamas, which is necessary, and the threat that it poses to Israel. With the future of Israelis and Palestinians in mind, Canada is joining the international call for humanitarian ceasefire.”

The Canadian capital’s daily, The Ottawa Citizen, wrote  a story quoting Iddo Moed, Israel’s ambassador to the Canada, saying, “I’m deeply disappointed with the support that Canada has given to this resolution that does not call out Hamas for its horrendous acts of terrorism against Israelis and does not address the root cause of the situation.”

The Citizen reported:

“Moed said Canada has previously been an ally to Israel at the UN helping to added needed context to resolutions at the assembly, but he said Canada didn’t do that today.

‘Part of the aim of this resolution was to isolate Israel in the UN yet again. Canada made it a point in the past not to allow that to happen.’”

Reaction From Washington

The U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Linda Thomas-Greenfield, said the U.S. could not support the resolution because it did not condemn Hamas. “Why is that so hard?” she asked, while adding that the U.S. was concerned about the humanitarian situation, but evidently not enough to stop the bombing.

In Washington, President Joe Biden at a fundraiser on Tuesday deflected the rising heat against the U.S. — now from its closet allies — by blaming Israel alone for the mess, as if Biden has no leverage over Tel Aviv.

In an article entitled, “Biden says ‘indiscriminate bombing’ in Gaza is costing Israel support,” The Washington Post reported:

“Biden told supporters that “the indiscriminate bombing that takes place” was beginning to cost Israel support around the world.

‘Bibi’s got a tough decision to make,’ Biden said, referring to Netanyahu by his nickname. ‘I think he has to change, and with this government, this government in Israel is making it very difficult for him to move.’”

Meanwhile, Biden keeps shipping weapons and money to Israel and keeps two aircraft carrier groups in the region to deter any nation that might even think about intervening to stop the genocide.

The Resolution

The General Assembly vote came in an emergency session called in response to the U.S. veto on Friday of a binding Security Council resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire.  A General Assembly resolutions aren’t binding but are politically significant.

The G.A. resolution “demands” that all parties comply with their obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law, “notably with regard to the protection of civilians.”

Two amendments making specific reference to extremist group Hamas were voted down.

Israel’s U.N. Ambassador Gilad Erdan called the resolution a “disgraceful” attempt to bind Israel’s hands, warning that “continuing Israel’s operation in Gaza is the only way any hostages will be released.”

Read the text of the full resolution below the video. 

Watch the debate at the General Assembly on Tuesday (3 hrs, 17 min.):

Text Of The Adopted Resolution

Protection Of Civilians And Upholding Legal And Humanitarian Obligations

The General Assembly,

Guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations,

Recalling its resolutions regarding the question of Palestine,

Recalling also all relevant Security Council resolutions,

Taking note of the letter dated 6 December 2023 from the Secretary-General, under Article 99 of the Charter of the United Nations, addressed to the President of the Security Council,

Taking note also of the letter dated 7 December 2023 from the Commissioner General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East addressed to the President of the General Assembly,

Expressing grave concern over the catastrophic humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip and the suffering of the Palestinian civilian population, and emphasizing that the Palestinian and Israeli civilian populations must be protected in accordance with international humanitarian law,

1. Demands an immediate humanitarian ceasefire;

2. Reiterates its demand that all parties comply with their obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law, notably with regard to the protection of civilians;

3. Demands the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages, as well as ensuring humanitarian access;

4. Decides to adjourn the tenth emergency special session temporarily and to authorize the President of the General Assembly at its most recent session to resume its meeting upon request from Member States.

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