As expected, this past Friday afternoon the United States vetoed a UN Security Council Resolution that would have condemned Israel for its “settlements” in the disputed territories of Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem.
The vote followed a week of scrambling where the US tried to substitute a toned down vote to be issued not as a resolution but as a weaker “President’s Statement.” This statement would have changed the wording of the resolution from “Israeli settlements established in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967” which means any settlement ever built, to “continued settlement activity” which is any new settlements. It would have objected to any non-negotiated change in status, a slap at the Palestinians goal of a unilateral declaration of statehood and it would have condemned “all forms of violence, including rocket fire from Gaza”
President Abbas objected to this change and insisted the original resolution be offered up for vote. The outcome: 14 to 1 to condemn Israel, with U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice casting the lone no vote. Immediately after her veto, Ambassador Rice launched into speech where she said she agreed with the resolution: