United States Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Nikki Haley explained that the peals of laughter at UN were a sign of genuine affection and respect for the US President Donald Trump. She said “(the world leaders) love how honest he is. It’s not diplomatic and they find it funny.”
Haley went on ‘Fox & Friends’ and said the coverage of Trump being laughed at was unfair and blamed the media for the negative spin. “The media has got this so wrong. I deal with these leaders every single day, I know exactly how they think. Do they love America? No. Do they respect America? Now they do.”
The audience at the UN General Assembly laughed at Trump during his opening remarks on Tuesday after he bragged about being the most effective president in his first two years.
In insisting that the world leaders were laughing ‘with’ Trump and not ‘at’ him, Haley said:
“When he goes and he is very truthful, they kind of are taken back by it—they’re not used to it. But let me tell you, all day yesterday they were falling over themselves to get a picture with him. To talk about how great his speech was. To talk about how strong it was. Whether he said good things about them or not, they love that he’s honest with them, and they’ve never seen anything like it. And so there’s a respect there.”
The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Arden however, seemed to have contradicted the American Ambassador. In appearing on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Arden suggested that some of the world leaders at first laughed at Trump – then they laughed with him.
The very very very delicate art of satirical diplomacy. Jacinda Ardern’s take on the UN laughing at Donald Trump #UNGA pic.twitter.com/JnUy3qYccl
— Tova O'Brien (@TovaOBrien) September 27, 2018
Colbert raised the moment when world leaders laughed at Trump during his speech to the UN and noted that Trump seemed surprised.
“What did you experience?”
Ardern asked him: “Are you trying to create a diplomatic incident?”
She told Colbert: “There was a little laugh and he said I didn’t expect that response and there was a bigger laugh then people laughed with him.”