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Israelis Praise Nikki Haley for Standing by Israel

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JERUSALEM, Israel – Israelis were as shocked as Americans at the seemingly sudden resignation of US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley. She's one of the best friends Israel has had in a long time.

Israelis are calling her a superstar. Nikki Haley had to be one of the most popular US officials ever here in Israel. She stood up for the Jewish state at the United Nations in a way that Israel hadn't seen for a long time, if ever.

On the sidelines of the UN General Assembly last month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Haley she had made the UN "smell better."

"The hall still permeates with the stench of anti-Israel and anti-Semitic resolutions, which are the same. And I want to thank you for clearing the air," he said.

Following the US veto of a UN vote on the status of Jerusalem last year during Hanukah, Netanyahu likened Haley to the Maccabees who overthrew the Syrian Greek rulers in Israel after they defiled the Temple.

"Thank you, Ambassador Haley. On Hanukkah, you spoke like a Maccabi. You lit a candle of truth. You dispel the darkness. One defeated the many. Truth defeated lies," Netanyahu told her.

Following the announcement that Haley would wrap up her two-year tenure at the United Nations, Netanyahu tweeted,

"I would like to thank Ambassador @nikkihaley, who led the uncompromising struggle against hypocrisy at the UN and on behalf of the truth and justice of our country. Best of luck!"

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat also thanked Haley.

"Thank you @nikkihaley for standing by Israel and the values of truth and justice. The people of Israel and #Jerusalem could not have asked for a better, more articulate friend."

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and even the Mossad (Secret Service) tweeted their goodbyes with Haley's picture.

"Thank you @nikkihaley for your service in the @UN and unwavering support for Israel and the truth. The soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces salute you!"

"We are sad to hear @nikkihaley is resigning her post as US ambassador to the UN. Our special maritime agents will never forget that special moment you had together. #ThankYouNikki"

Iranian officials, unsurprisingly, were glad to see her go, with Alireza Miryousefi, the head of Iran's press office at the UN tweeting,

But the head of the Israeli Jewish Congress, Arsen Ostrovsky, tweeted,

"Winston Churchill once said, 'You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.' Thank you @nikkihaley for always fiercely standing up for freedom, democracy & human rights. You were a rare beacon of light, hope & justice at the UN!"   

Finally, the popular Israeli cartoonist, Yaakov Kirschen, asked the question many are pondering: "Who can fill Nikki Haley's shoes?"

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About The Author

Julie Stahl

Julie Stahl is a correspondent for CBN News in the Middle East. A Hebrew speaker, she has been covering news in Israel full-time for more than 20 years. Julie’s life as a journalist has been intertwined with CBN – first as a graduate student in Journalism, then as a journalist with Middle East Television (METV) when it was owned by CBN from 1989-91, and now with the Middle East Bureau of CBN News in Jerusalem since 2009. As a correspondent for CBN News, Julie has covered Israel’s wars with Gaza, rocket attacks on Israeli communities, stories on the Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria, and the