- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 18, 2017

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley will tell a Senate panel Wednesday that if confirmed as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, she will fight to restore America’s leadership role in the world and stand up to bias against close ally Israel.

“My job — our job — is to reform the UN in ways that rebuild the confidence of the American people. We must build an international institution that honors America’s commitment to freedom, democracy, and human rights,” Mrs. Haley says in her prepared opening statement for her confirmation hearing.

The Trump transition team provided the prepared remarks to news organizations.

Ms. Haley, the daughter of Indian immigrants and a rising star in the GOP before being selected for the Cabinet post job by President-elect Donald Trump, says an honest assessment of the U.N. finds “an institution that is often at odds with American national interests and American taxpayers.”

She will pledge to reverse the perception during the Obama administration that the U.S. has stepped back from its leadership role in the world.

“When America fails to lead, the world becomes a more dangerous place. And when the world becomes more dangerous, the American people become more vulnerable,” she says. “At the UN, as elsewhere, the United States is the indispensable voice of freedom. It is time that we once again find that voice.”

Mrs. Haley also will vow to stand up for Israel.

“Nowhere has the UN’s failure been more consistent and more outrageous than in its bias against our close ally Israel,” she says.

Her defense of Israel should be popular on Capitol Hill, where lawmakers from both parties overwhelmingly opposed the Obama administration allowing a U.N. resolution last month that condemned Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

“In the General Assembly session just completed, the UN adopted twenty resolutions against Israel and only six targeting the rest of the world’s countries combined,” she says in the remarks. “In the past ten years, the Human Rights Council has passed 62 resolutions condemning the reasonable actions Israel takes to defend its security. Meanwhile the world’s worst human rights abusers in Syria, Iran, and North Korea received far fewer condemnations.”

Ms. Haley faces less resistance from Senate Democrats that other of Mr. Trump’s picks. The biggest criticism has been her lack of international and diplomatic experience.

She will argue that the job of governor requires diplomatic skills. She will also attempt to turn her status as an outsider to an advantage.

“Like most government agencies, the United Nations could benefit from a fresh set of eyes,” Mrs. Haley says. “I will take an outsider’s look at the institution. As I have in every challenge in my life, I will come to the UN to work — and to work smart.”

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