Please note: This article contains strong language.
In the modern day, you may find yourself shaking your head and wondering what on earth our leaders are thinking. We all have had times when we heard a situation involving world leaders and immediately felt that we could have done a better job, or that that even a fifth grader could have done a better job. I will present several examples of situations that I enjoyed, but these situations are far more prevalent than you might think. I would urge everyone to take some time to do a little Google search and learn a little more about our world leaders. Without further ado, I present to you: fifth grader or politician?
One person, upon being displeased with the other person’s conduct, threatened to inflict bodily harm upon him in his next encounter, specifically using a sports maneuver designed to inflict pain (and often resulting in injury).
Who was it?
If you guessed world leader, you were correct! Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott threatened to “shirtfront” (a sports term where you slam your shoulder into another person’s chest) Russian president Vladimir Putin over the Malaysian Airlines incident. His claim was that the plane was shot down by Russian-backed rebels using Russian weapons, making Putin complicit. In case you are unaware, this is not an effective way to conduct diplomacy. As anyone could have predicted, the G20 summit, which is the event where the “shirtfront” should have taken place, was not much of a success.
This individual was, to put it mildly, a very eccentric liar. He would tell people that his birth was divine, and that he had written the six best operas in history. Once he even tried to breed giant rabbits for food.
Who was it?
It was none other than former North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Il (I write this tentatively as I don’t want Ha’Am to be the subject of the next round of cyber attacks). In addition to the things he was most famous for — namely censorship, nuclear programs, being an evil bastard, starving his country, and poor diplomatic relationships — Kim was also somewhat of a childish pathological liar. The examples listed above are just the beginning of a startlingly long list. Kim also allegedly played golf and shot 38 under par with 11 holes in one. We know that this is true because his bodyguards were there to confirm it, making him the best golfer in world history. Additionally, he also invented the hamburger in 2009, so anyone who claims to have had one before that, stop lying — no one believes you. There is so much more, but we must move on, so I’ll leave you with this: Kim was apparently a mind-reading god… he’s actually reading your mind right now. For more information just Google Kim Jong Il’s myths and propaganda, or cult of personality.
An unusually high-achieving and well-respected member of a group is elected democratically to represent that group.
Who was it?
This is actually a real-life example from my elementary school days as a fifth grader. We democratically elected members of our class as student government representatives. They didn’t necessarily do much, but there was no lying, no fighting, and very little personal drama. Kinda makes you think, huh?
A solid friendship with deep foundations is challenged by petty personal drama.
Who was it?
Netanyahu and Obama! This situation is slightly more complicated, however, since many people would fault both, while many others would fault one or neither for the tensions emerging in a previously solid relationship between the US and Israel. To put this situation into perspective, I will quote Bill Clinton regarding Netanyahu: “Who the fuck does he think he is? Who’s the fucking superpower here?” While both Obama and Netanyahu’s actions may be less than ideal, the fact is that their deteriorating relationship would affect Israel much more than it would the United States. If we are going to continue to present facts, Netanyahu has done a consistent disservice to American-Israeli relations. There is so much content to describe about the situation, but I believe this simple statement by Netanyahu is very revealing about his general attitude: “I know what America is, America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction.” He has acted on this many times; the best example being his visible support and campaigning for Mitt Romney. The current situation of addressing Congress in direct opposition to the President also brings this quote to mind. Overall, Netanyahu has allowed himself to be drawn into personal feuds with not one but two US presidents, whose country he and his own people rely on deeply.