You know the type of kid; There he is, in the playground, a bit scrawny and stunted, tie askew: he's probably ginger. His face is scowling or vacant mostly, except when he finds someone younger or smaller than him, and his face lights up with the joy of bullying them mercilessly. He'll punch them in the face for no reason, except to see the look on their faces; He'll trip people up as they come down stairs; he'll stab them in the arm with a pair of compasses, or steal their lunch; most of all, he delights in attacking people when their backs are turned.
Now you would think, considering his size, that he'd be a prime target for bigger, harder bullies. But no - take a step towards him, and suddenly, his brother, the biggest, meanest, brick-shithouse-built bully in the entire school appears from nowhere and leaves you as a bloody spot of ground. So little scrawny goes on, bullying and stealing with impunity, because he can. What someone has forgotten to tell him, though, is that one day, his big brother won't be there at his side any more....
....and that is precisely how I see Israel. A jumped-up, paranoid, ridiculously macho little country punching far above its weight thanks to big bro America. Its over-the-top offensive is vile; its claims that it is targeting only terrorists preposterous; its ongoing persecution of its enemies, dangerous and destabilising. How can it seriously say that it wants peace, when all it does is exacerbate the situation? If people are starving; if people cannot travel to work; if people cannot access their fields; if people have to wait hours for water, while over a fence, their neighbours wallow in swimming pools; if they are fenced in; if all these things, how can you dare to expect them to accept your version of peace?
This is not to excuse Hamas or Hezbollah, or Ahmedinijad in Iran. They are equally bullies - they just don't have the firepower that Israel does.