Unlike many among us, the Israelis know when the hands of the clock are straight up. Charles Krauthammer says that that small beacon of civilized values in a sea of hatred is fighting for its existence. Wes Pruden knows that they know what is at stake (even if we don’t):

The Arabs who torment Israel ought to have learned by now that they’re no match for the Jews, who don’t really want to fight but are pretty good at it, anyway. Ganging up hasn’t shortened the odds, either. The Arab coalition of the zealots and not always courageous was defeated in 1948, again in 1967 and still again in 1973. The Israelis make quick work of the Arab combinations every time, usually without popping a sweat. Not until women and children were recruited to become suicide bombers did the Arab military machine show the world its manliness.

Now the world is on edge again as the war clouds rim the horizon in the Middle East, and this time it’s the fruitcakes in Iran who are eager to show their metal, if not necessarily their mettle. The Jews win every time because they understand they have to win every time to survive. The knowledge that your back is at the edge of the cliff, and hungry alligators wait on the rocks below stiffens the resolve even of the reluctant. 

The same holds for us. But many among us refuse to acknowledge the gators.