Haley Has Helped the U.N. Avoid the Worst of Trump’s Hostility—So Far

Haley Has Helped the U.N. Avoid the Worst of Trump’s Hostility—So Far
President Donald Trump and Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., during a working lunch with ambassadors from U.N. Security Council countries and their spouses, Washington, April 24, 2017 (AP photo by Susan Walsh).

If you want a catchphrase to summarize the Trump administration’s first six months of dealing with the United Nations, the best option is probably, “It could be a lot worse.”

U.S. President Donald Trump has frequently attacked the U.N. since taking office. The president’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate change accord at the start of June marked a major escalation in his offensive on multilateralism.

Yet Turtle Bay is not in ruins, in part because, on a day-to-day basis, the U.S. is a more flexible player at the U.N. than its leader’s rhetoric suggests. American diplomats have taken tough stances on issues from the organization’s costs to its treatment of Israel, but they remain willing to make bargains over tricky diplomatic questions.

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