US Ambassador Threatens to Cut UN Funds Due to ´Palestine´ Map

Following an Arutz-7 report, US Ambassador John Bolton filed a complaint with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan about the organization's use of a map that replaces all of Israel with 'Palestine.'

Ezra HaLevi , | updated: 4:17 PM

A December 9th Arutz-7 article exposed an official ceremony held at the United Nations during which dignitaries and UN officials spoke before a huge map that replaced the entire Jewish State with 'Palestine.' The article featured photos and video footage of the ceremony, provided by and was picked up by Fox News, who used the story in several news segments.
The map, titled Palestine

Soon after, U.S. Ambassador John Bolton filed a sharply worded complaint to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, threatening that the U.S., which funds the body's advertising, would be cut.

Bolton's letter of complaint was recently published by the New York Sun. "It was entirely inappropriate for this map to be used," Bolton wrote. "It can be misconstrued to suggest that the United Nations tacitly supports the abolition of the state of Israel."

Bolton also referred to the severity of such a map being displayed by a world body just days after the leader of Iran called for the elimination of the Jewish State. "Given that we now have a world leader pursuing nuclear weapons who is calling for the state of Israel to be 'wiped off the map,' the issue has even greater salience," Bolton wrote.

Bolton's letter also questioned whether the UN was permitted to use the body's advertising budget, which is paid for by US taxpayers, to promote the 'Solidarity With Palestine' event where the map was displayed, when US law prohibits the funding of such events. The United States funds about a quarter of the UN's budget, including several UN budget allocations such as advertising. According to the Sun, Bolton threatened to cut off US funding of the UN if the body continued to fund and host anti-Israel events.

UN Chief Spokesman Stephane Dujarric said that the secretary-general was "grateful" that Bolton and others had brought the matter to his attention and had raised the matter of the map.

Though the response implied that Annan did not see the map, he is seen standing before it in pictures published on the web site.
Annan with the map in the background

Annan's spokesman also said that it was the General Assembly's Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People which decided to display the map, and not the Secretary-General. "This gives a very unfortunate impression that the United Nations favors replacing Israel by a single Palestinian state, which is not the case."

Dujarric stopped short of committing that Annan would not attend future events that displayed such a map, however. Neither has an answer yet been given to Ambassador Bolton's demand to know "Who is the high-level official within the secretariat who approved use of the map for the event?"

The PA representative at the UN told The Sun that the map was accurate up until the year 1948, which was clearly written on the map in Arabic. He also argued that US Ambassador John Danforth took part in a ceremony before the same map in 2004 and nobody complained about it then.

The Zionist Organization of America praised Ambassador Bolton's letter. Speaking at ZOA's national Dinner last month, Bolton criticized other UN bodies, such as the UN Development Program (UNDP), for such actions as producing mugs and T-shirts with the statement, 'Today Gaza, Tomorrow Jerusalem.'

"The ZOA commends Ambassador Bolton for his forthright stand on justice for Israel within the UN," said ZOA President Morton A. Klein. "For too long, the democratic world has tolerated the vicious institutional enmity against Israel in the world body."

Klein added sharp criticism of the UN spokesman's response to the letter. "We are also shocked at the response on the map incident from the UN spokesman, Stephane Dujarric," he said. "What would Kofi Annan's spokesman say if an Israeli diplomat invited the Secretary-General to a function in a hall displaying a map of the Middle East on which Jordan did not appear, but with Israel appearing within today's parameters but also in place of Jordan? Would Kofi Annan have accepted that or would he have walked out?

"Would he have permitted his spokesman to say later that he was asking the Israelis merely to 'consider' removing the map in the future? He should have been able to say that the Secretary-General opposes its use and will not attend events at which it is displayed, but failed to do so."