By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton
Nikki Haley could arguably be president one day. She’s absolutely fearless and I admire her a great deal. One the best things President Trump ever did was appoint her as the ambassador to the feckless United Nations. Haley was a lioness in her stance in defense of Israel and moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. She was also unstoppable over North Korea and she has more than once put Iran back on their heels. She is a sight to behold and a powerful force to be reckoned with.
As much as Haley hates donning her armor every day at the U.N., she has used them to America’s benefit, eliciting three rounds of tougher sanctions on North Korea last year and forcing them to the table to discuss nuclear weapons. In an interview with Reuters, Haley recalled telling Trump: “We would not be in the situation we are with North Korea without the U.N. because that was the only way to get the international community on the same page.” However, don’t be fooled… I think Haley would love to see us leave the U.N. When Trump took office, he called the U.N. “just a club for people to get together, talk and have a good time.” It’s far more nefarious than that unfortunately.
After 17 months of battling animosity at the United Nations and after the U.S. has exited the U.N. Human Rights Council, Trump asked Haley what she thinks of the U.N. She gave him an earful. “Unbelievably bureaucratic, it wastes a lot of money, it has some real biases against Israel, against us at times, it ignores a lot that’s going on that needs attention.” Haley is definitely a leader and she stands out among the communists, dictators, Islamists and politicos at the U.N.
Some diplomats have said they see the former South Carolina governor as the stable face of U.S. foreign policy. When Trump leaves them confused, some say they look to her for interpretation. “My job is to give clarity to everything the administration’s doing so that no one wonders where we are. I always wanted to make sure there was no gray. That it was black and white,” Haley said in the interview during a trip last month to India.
Which brings us to Russia. Haley has a far tougher public stance on Russia than Trump does. In May, she described Russian expansionism in the Ukraine as “outrageous” and said the U.S. position “will not waver.” I think that is pretty clear. Only days later, however, Trump urged the Group of Seven countries to reinstate Russia, booted out for its 2014 annexation of Crimea from the Ukraine. I believe that was a mistake and thankfully, it will not go anywhere.
Two weeks before Trump’s July 16 summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Haley told Reuters that “basically what the president is saying is it’s better for us to have communication than not.” And that is right. We will never get to detente if we do not sit down and talk with them. But Haley also said the following I agree with, “Well, first of all, we don’t trust Russia,” Haley responded forcefully to Christian Broadcasting News anchor David Brody, “we don’t trust Putin, we never will, they’re never gonna be our friend, that’s just a fact. But what I do think is, whether it’s the president sitting down with Kim [Jong-Un], or whether the president sits down with Putin, those are things that have to happen,” she continued. “You can’t get to the end of the other side if you don’t have those conversations.”
Haley’s U.N. counterparts describe her as charming and yet very tough. She sees herself as a fighter. “I don’t see (my role) as pushing an ‘America First’ policy, I see it as defending America because every day I feel like I put body armor on. I just don’t know who I’m fighting that day,” Haley said. Nikki Haley joined the Trump administration after accepting the appointment on the condition that she was made a member of the Cabinet and the National Security Council. If she hadn’t done that, she would not wield the power she does at the U.N. Haley is a very savvy and formidable ambassador to the U.N.
“She’s got an eye and ear for where the politics of an issue are,” said a senior Western diplomat, who, like all those consulted at the United Nations, would only speak on condition of anonymity. Those instincts have helped put the 46 year-old mother of two on the list of possible Republican presidential candidates. She dismisses the presidential chatter and said it has never come up with Trump, who intends to run again in 2020, “because he knows he doesn’t need to raise it.” But she’s young and has plenty of time to go for the presidency and it scares not just the U.N., communists, dictators and Islamists… it terrifies leftists.