Lion: Courage! What makes a king out of a slave? Courage! What makes the flag on the mast to wave? Courage! What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist, or the dusky dusk? What makes the muskrat guard his musk? Courage! What makes the sphinx the seventh wonder? Courage! What makes the dawn come up like thunder? Courage! What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the "ape" in apricot? What have they got that I ain't got?
Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tin Woodsman: Courage!
Wizard of Oz
That came to mind when considering what the difference is between Netanyahu and Obama. Not courage per se, but perhaps the courage of one's convictions...or just the convictions.
Consider Niles Gardiner, who writes that Benjamin Netanyahu shows Barack Obama what real leadership is:
Watching Benjamin Netanyahu’s barn-storming address to a joint meeting of the United States Congress today, I was struck not only by the forcefulness of his message, but by the sheer conviction and sense of purpose that drove it. There was no teleprompter in sight as the Israeli prime minister delivered a speech worthy of a warrior statesman fighting literally for his nation’s survival. It was in part a response to President Obama’s Middle East address last week. The president was away in London today on an official state visit, but his aides would have been closely watching, and his vice president Joe Biden was present.
You know where you stand with Netanyahu, who is unyielding in his defence of his country and his people, and in no mood to negotiate with enemies who threaten his homeland’s destruction. There was not a hint of dithering or uncertainty in his words, or any kind of apology for the actions of his country – in great contrast to the distinctly weak leadership style of his US counterpart. This was a magnificent address, one which drew several standing ovations from the large number of Senators and Representatives attending, from both sides of the political aisle. [emphasis added]Consider those qualities:
- sheer conviction and sense of purpose
- fighting literally for his nation’s survival
- unyielding in his defense of his country and his people
- in no mood to negotiate with enemies who threaten his homeland’s destruction
- not a hint of dithering or uncertainty in his words, or any kind of apology for the actions of his country
Obama's strength instead has been his rhetoric--which may be what his followers looked for in a politician and candidate back in 2008, but now in terms of actually getting the job done, especially in the international arena, just talk alone simply has not worked. The fact that Obama has had to take on a number of Bush's policies as his own proves that.
And now people are saying: if only Obama would take on something of Netanyahu as well!
Hat tip: EV
Technorati Tag: Obama and Netanyahu.