U.N. Amb. Susan Rice and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have declared today’s vote by the United Nations General Assembly to recognize Palestine as a state “unfortunate and counterproductive,” although Rice was also quick to note that the resolution does not establish a Palestinian state; rather, it grants Palestine the status of “nonmember observer state” at the General Assembly.
The overwhelming vote to recognize Palestine was certainly no surprise, with the United States and Israel standing with only a handful of nations, including Canada.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, a harsh critic of Rice and her handling of Benghazigate, was on the same page regarding the effect of the vote on the ongoing peace process. Supporters of Israel fear that Palestine’s new status could further isolate Israel and pave the way for war crimes charges against Israel in the International Criminal Court.
The vote has supporters of Israel questioning not so much the status of Palestine but the legitimacy of the United Nations itself.
Those who stand with the majority in the General Assembly, though, were quick to denounce the United States, Israel and those nations that abstained.
For her part, Rice quickly downplayed the importance of the vote.