Character And Background

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has returned from his meeting with Obama empty-handed. Netanyahu had striven to get the Obama Regime to work with Israel, or at least support them, in a strike upon Iran’s nuclear weapons development program but Obama refused to do so until after the 2012 elections this November.

This rejection was to be expected. Netanyahu and Obama are two very different people with insurmountable differences in outlook, priorities, and basic character.

Netanyahu and Obama as young men - your background shapes your character
Netanyahu and Obama In Their Youths

Birth, childhood upbringing, and one’s early years as an adult shape the character of each of us and Netanyahu and Obama had wildly divergent upbringings and youths.

Their Births And Upbringing

Netanyahu was not only born in Israel, he is one of the very first “natural born” Israelis . He was born, the middle of three siblings, in Tel Aviv in 1949 to Judean native, Zila née Segal and professor Benzion Netanyahu, whose family fled Poland, then a part of the Czars’ Russian Empire, in 1920, and was raised and educated originally in Jerusalem.

Later, between 1956 – 1958, and again in 1963–67, the Netanyahu family lived in United States in Cheltenham, PA in America.


Obama is presumed to have been born in Honolulu, Hawaii long in 1961, after  the founding of America. He was born, an only child, to US native, Stanley Ann Dunham and her estranged husband, the Kenyan Luo,  Barack Obama, Sr.

When Obama was three years-old, his mother married Indonesian Lolo Soetoro and 1967 the family moved to Jakarta, Indonesia where Obama spent the next four years of his childhood before being sent back to Hawaii to live with his grandparents. His mother didn’t return to him until a year later and then left him again in 1977 to return to Indonesia, not returning again 1994, a year before she died of ovarian cancer.

Their Youths

Fresh out of Cheltenham High School in 1967, Netanyahu enlisted in the Tzva Hagana Leyisra’el (Tzahal) which is more widely called the Israeli Defense Force (IDF),  and fought in the Six-Day War.

Later, Netanyahu became a team leader in an IDF special forces unit, Sayeret Mat’kal – often referred to by other members of the Tzahal as “The Unit” – and took part in many operations including Operation Gift and Operation Isotope. He also fought on the front lines in the 1973 Yom Kippur War, conducting various special forces raids along the Suez Canal, and then leading his team of Mat’kal commando in an assault deep into Syrian territory.

Three years later his elder brother, Yonatan Netanyahu – also a member of Israel’s elite Sayeret Mat’kal – was killed in action while leading Operation Entebbe in Uganda.


After graduating from the elite and exclusive Punahou School in 1979 Obama moved to Los Angeles to attend Occidental College where he began his career in racial activism with his first public speech, calling for Occidental’s disinvestment from South Africa due to its policy of apartheid.

Obama transferred to Columbia University in New York, NY in 1981 and graduated from there in 1983 Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a specialization in international relations.

He the next two years working for Business International Corporation and then at the New York Public Interest Research Group before being hired as a director by the Developing Communities Project, a church-based church-based community organization in Chicago, IL, where he worked until entering Harvard Law School in 1988.

Character And Background

With the exception of a certain international mobility during the childhoods, Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu’s and President Obama’s circumstances of birth, childhood upbringing, and early adulthood life and career choices couldn’t be further apart. This, perforce, results in these two men having characters that also couldn’t be further apart.

They may, and probably do, agree that Israel has the sovereign right to defend itself; that Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons; and that nuclear weapons in the hands of an Islamist regime whose eschatology requires the destruction of Israel is an explicit and overt threat. It make sense though, given the respective characters their upbringing would mold, that Netanyahu’s priorities would be removing that existential threat to his people as quickly as possible and Obama’s priorities would be his upcoming bid for reelection.

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3 Responses to “Character And Background”

  1. Ceefour Says:

    Its really not difficult to see with whom one would want to drink a beer.

  2. Alan Scott Says:


    This goes to character also. If President Obama campaigned as a typical patronage Democrat of say the FDR stripe, this would not be that relevant. But he said he would be ethical. Well anyone can judge for themselves.

  3. jonolan Says:

    Yes it does, Alan. I wasn’t in this post going to go too deeply into the character or lack of character of either Netanyahu or Obama. I was merely providing some information about the early lives that shaped their respective characters – but you have provided evidence to support my opinion of Obama’s priorities.

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