U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told the UN Security Council on Tuesday that Israel isn’t behind the misery that Gaza’s residents are suffering — the enclave’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization is the cause.
Haley told her colleagues on the Council that she had visited Israel as well as the Gaza Belt region specifically to check out the situation along the southern border, and what she found there was a real eye-opener.
“Hamas is one of these forces of terror that yet again showed its true colors to the world earlier this month. It is a terrorist organization so ruthless that it will not hesitate to put the lives of innocent children on the line,” she said.
“A few weeks ago, UN officials discovered a tunnel underneath two schools run by the UN in Gaza. It was the exact type of tunnel that Hamas has used for years. These tunnels are what Hamas uses to smuggle in the materials they need to make rockets. Or to sneak into Israel to attack civilians or kidnap them in the dead of night.
“What is happening to the people of Gaza is heartbreaking. And it is so preventable. Gaza is prime real estate on the Mediterranean Sea. It has enormous potential. But the potential is being squandered by the terrorists who govern it,” Haley pointed out.
“Make no mistake, Israel did not cause the problems in Gaza, even though it is often the usual suspect around here,” she underlined.
“Ten years ago, every Israeli soldier was withdrawn from Gaza, and for the last 10 years, there has not been a single Israeli settler in Gaza….We should never forget the responsibility for this humanitarian crisis rests squarely with the one group that actually controls Gaza: Hamas.
“I saw how this works firsthand. I walked through one of the terrorist tunnels coming out of the Gaza Strip, which Israel discovered and since secured. The top and sides of this tunnel were lined with solid, sturdy concrete,” she observed.
“We know how badly Palestinians in Gaza need concrete to rebuild their homes. But here, in this tunnel, we see how Hamas uses the concrete Gaza receives – not to help the people, but to fortify its terrorist infrastructure.
“This Security Council must stand up to condemn Hamas’ terror….We should condemn Hamas in this Council’s resolutions and statements,” she demanded. “We should name Hamas as the group responsible when rockets are fired from Gaza, or when fresh tunnels are discovered.
“And we should designate Hamas as a terrorist organization in a resolution, with consequences for anyone who continues to support it. That is how we can help build a more peaceful Middle East,” Haley urged.