WASHINGTON: The United States and its ally Israel were isolated and humiliated on world stage on Thursday after the international community overwhelmingly voted to upgrade Palestine to a non-member observer state in the United Nations.
Canada, Panama, the Czech Republic and four tiny Pacific island states were the only ones in the 193-member UN General Assembly that backed the Washington-Tel Aviv axis in the crushing 9-138 defeat, with 41 abstentions. Allies and friends abandoned the United States and Israel in droves, fracturing a facade of western unity that Washington had long engineered.
India voted for the upgrade in keeping with its long-standing support for the Palestinian cause, showing that its strategic ties with the United States and intense defence cooperation with Israel will hardly inhibit it from making an independent call.
But the real shock for the US and Israel came from Europe, which, with the exception of the Czech Republic, deserted the duo.
France led the European revolt, and it was joined by Germany, Italy, Spain, Norway, and Denmark as the 27-member European Union put behind its historic sympathy for Jewish state in the face of what many see as growing atrocities on the Palestinian people. Such is the change of mood in the international community that even the United States lackeys such as Australia and Singapore abstained, leaving Washington and Tel Aviv isolated.
Philippines, a virtual client state of the US, voted in favour of Palestine.