Former UN Ambassador John Bolton on Obama, Israel and Iran.
I was a scrawny, dreamy kid. Schoolyard bullies sensed my weakness and beat the crap out of me on a pretty regular basis.
My Yeshiva of Flatbush teachers were less than useless.
“I don’t care who started the fight,” they said, “you’re both guilty.”
I was like, that makes no sense whatsoever.
Finally, a sensible and sympathetic teacher, Rabbi Teitelbaum, noticed that I was being used as a punching bag by a simian brute. The good rabbi took me aside and told me to fight back as hard as I could.
“I’m too little,” I whined.
“Don’t just give up,” he said, “make believe you’re Yehuda Maccabee.”
Well, that was inspiring.
I took Rabbi Teitelbaum’s advice and though I didn’t defeat the bully, I did manage to cause him enough pain—I practically ripped the kid’s ear off—that he never again picked on me.
Weakness invites aggression in the schoolyard and in geopolitics.