12/11/13

2013 saw the death of three world leaders.

Leader 1: A dictator, a demagogue, who ruined his country and sowed disharmony and malcontent in his region.

Leader 2: Took his country when it was down, turned it around and brought it back to nearly the height of its glory, clearly as high as it has been in decades. Had an enormous positive effect on the world, contributed way beyond its real power to global events, and had a significant positive impact on one of the most important geopolitical events of the 20th century.

Leader 3: A revolutionary fighter; to some, originally a terrorist (history is written by the winners, I guess), that ultimately was handed victory by others (ironically Leader 2 was very instrumental in that process). His biggest claim to fame is, and it is big and unique, that he took this victory and made the most of it. He established a fairly democratic country, decent respect for the rule of law, and human rights. This in contrast to so many other revolutionary leaders who abused power once they got it. However, he was not as positive in his region allying himself with dubious other leaders and rejecting any efforts to help remove some of the really bad national leaders in his region on whom he had a lot of influence.

The Obama administration’s reaction?

Leader 1: Was staunch anti-American and as such, there was no issue here. The U.S. simply ignored it.

Leader 2: A staunch ally that helped the U.S. shape world events in favor of the U.S., the Obama administration hardly recognized it and the delegation to the funeral was not significant.

Leader 3: FOUR living U.S. presidents went for the funeral, a 5th send a tweet, regretting he could not come due to illness.

The media’s reaction?

Leader 1: The media went overboard with wall-to-wall coverage of the death, highlighting the only good thing that one could say about him which is that he brought to focus the plight of the poor people of his nation. They ignored all the terrible things that he did including the fact that he made the plight of the poor much worse.

Leader 2: The cover was negative focusing mainly on the controversies that are part of anyone’s life, especially one who has done so much good. By definition, one who does so much to revolutionize one’s country and effect a major change in world order, one has to cross some swords with some people. It was shocking how negative and unjust the cover was in comparison to so much good that this leader did on balance.

Leader 3: Effusive. Exaggerated beyond any bound. After all, the man had many failings. His one claim to fame was that he did not pursue his former enemies and thus managed to unite his nation. But that is it. He had ZERO effect on the world and wasted the moral authority that he had even in his region.

Who were they?

Leader 1: Chavez of Venezuela.

Leader 3: Mandela. I suspect that my limited respect for him may be controversial but the facts support me. I challenge anyone to show me anything positive that he did other than what I said above. Was there any positive influence that he had on Africa? On Zimbabwe, for instance? On Libya? What about in all the other places in Africa where so many atrocities occurred while he was president of the strongest country in the continent, and had so much moral authority, yet he did nothing. In world context—he was a no one. Not one world issue did he contribute to. He achieved victory because his cause was just and because others handed victory to him.

Leader 2: Any guess? It is, of course, Margret Thatcher on whose death I wrote before.

The media are shallow and superficial; we know that. Obama is neither; he is simply not sincere. For him it is all about ideology. Because Thatcher was a staunch conservative and an ally of Reagan and Bush (senior) she, does not exist for him. But because Mandela was black and a socialist, he is a hero. A demi-god.

It is so disappointing that you have such shallow world and insincere leadership.