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BULLY PULPIT: Trump Says Votes From The Caribbean Will Be Carefully Monitored As Determinant For Future Aid To The Region

UP A CREEK WITHOUT A PADDLE: Caribbean countries could be left sucking salt if they vote against the United States at the United Nations, President Donald Trump warns.

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WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has threatened to cut off American aid to any country, including those in the Caribbean, that votes for a resolution at the United Nations condemning his recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Trump’s statement, delivered at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday in which he exulted over the passage of a tax overhaul, followed a letter to U.N. General Assembly members from U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, in which she warned that the United States would take note of countries that voted in favor of the measure.

“All of these nations that take our money and then they vote against us at the Security Council or they vote against us, potentially, at the Assembly, they take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars and then they vote against us,” Trump said.

“Well, we’re watching those votes,” Trump added. “Let them vote against us; we’ll save a lot. We don’t care.”

But while Trump can hold up aid unilaterally as a form of leverage, cancelling it would require new legislation.

The bitter confrontation at the United Nations shows the lingering repercussions of Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem, which defied world opinion and upended decades of American policy.

While the decision has not unleashed the violence in the Arab capitals that some had feared, it has left the United States diplomatically isolated.

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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