According to a recent Politico survey, a little more than a third of Americans support UNSCR 2334, over a third have no opinion, and just 28% oppose it:
More Americans support last month’s United Nations Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlements than those who oppose it, while a plurality of respondents hold no viewpoint on the matter, according to new polling.
The survey’s findings are worth remembering when we contrast them with the 342-80 House vote condemning the Security Council resolution (7 members did not vote). To their credit, Reps. Amash, Jones, and Duncan voted no. One might think from the House vote that there is broad majority support in the country for the hard-line position contained in the resolution of disapproval, but it reflects the views of just 28% of the country. Hard-line views on many other foreign policy issues are always over-represented in Congress and especially among Republicans in Congress, but this is a particularly striking example of how unrepresentative the House can be.
The text of H.Res. 11 contains some remarkably false and misleading claims. The resolution states that passage of UNSCR 2334 “undermined the long-standing position of the United States to oppose and veto United Nations Security Council resolutions that seek to impose solutions to final status issues,” but it did no such thing. The U.S. has allowed other resolutions with similar language to be passed, and this language was never understood as an attempt to impose these solutions. In fact, the Security Council resolution was specifically aimed at condemning those things that threaten to make a negotiated settlement impossible, including the continued building of illegal settlements in the occupied territories. It is not the U.N. that is trying to impose something here. It is stating its opposition to the settlement-building that is steadily eliminating the possibility of a viable Palestinian state. It is not credible to claim to be in favor of “a durable and sustainable peace agreement” while effectively siding with the political forces that adamantly oppose reaching an agreement.
The House also claims that passage of the U.N. resolution “contributes to the politically motivated acts of boycott, divestment from, and sanctions against Israel,” but this is exactly what it does not do. There may be increased international pressure on illegal settlements outside of Israel, but that assumes that Israel and the settlements will be and should be treated differently. The more that “pro-Israel” hawks try to blur the line between Israel and the settlements, the worse it will be for Israel’s international standing. If members of the House don’t want Israel to face deeper international isolation, they should be discouraging the behavior that contributes to it rather than chiding the U.N. for restating the obvious that these settlements are illegal and an obstacle to peace.