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Ah, Obama lands in South Africa just in time to join in the Mandela worship.

“US President Barack Obama is to meet members of Nelson Mandela’s family during his visit to South Africa, the White House says. But officials confirmed that the president will not see the ailing leader himself, who is in a critical conditions in hospital. Mr Obama’s Air Force One landed in Pretoria on Friday evening, as part of his three-country tour of Africa. He is holding talks with his South African counterpart, Jacob Zuma. The US president has described Mr Mandela as a “hero for the world”.

I wonder exactly what Obama finds so heroic about Mandela?

  • Is it his terrorist record?
  • Is it his embrace of Communism?
  • Is it his hatred of Israel?
  • Is it his contempt for America?
  • Is it for the soaring poverty he presided over as President, the record crime, the devastating advance of AIDS?

So, what DOES Obama find so inspiring about Mandela. Ah well, as Obama points out, he is not in SA for a photo op.

Correct – he has already got that…

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37 thoughts on “HERO FOR THE WORLD?

  1. When a swan song goes on so Long, it sooner or later turns into farce.

    Last week Mandela’s family was saying his condition was deteriorating just as his political spokesmen were saying it’s stabilising.

    Meanwhile, while crowds were outside the hospital singing and dancing, one daughter said that there was something “racist” about the (international) media attention been given to her father.

    Best of all, another daughter issued a statement saying that “Anything is imminent”.

    And it was.

  2. He led the overthrow of a tyranny, and then led the reconciliation.

    Apart from this, there is nothing to admire.

  3. as a symbol he was great, as a man, a president, and an actual leader he was not so great.

  4. Mandela’s greatness rests entirely with his behaviour at the most pivotal moment in South Africa’s history. During the delicate transition from White minority rule to full democracy it was almost entirely the genial forgiving and good natured behaviour and personality of Mandela that made it much much more peaceful than could have been expected. White and Black South Africans owe a great deal of gratitude to Mandela for that. All the carping about his other faults and choices pale into insignificance besides that achievement.

  5. That blog that you link to is absolutely impartial with no agenda Allan.

    Colm is correct. SA’s transition to democracy could have been an absolute bloodbath. Mandela’s magnanimous attitude largely helped to prevent that.

    With the exception of the the first and last point David’s list above is ourageously exaggerated hyperbole or completely untrue.

  6. ATW never ceases to amaze me. I used to be somewhat shocked when I read some of the silly stuff posted here but now it makes me laugh…not in a cynical way. I don’t like cynism. I think it’s lazy. The reaching that goes on to put a negative spin on events/people puts a little hop in my step when I log on here in the morning and read the ridiculous things folks say just to be disagreeable. But there are always voices of reason. Today (and often), it’s Colm.
    As a man, Mandela isn’t perfect nor does he pretend to be. But his accomplishments outshine any of our own. When I think of him, one of the memories that pops into my mind is the pure joy on his face when he’s dancing. When he passes…I bet he dances into the afterlife.

    1. I bet his victims don’t, Mairin2. There is noting “lazy” about what I have writte, each point can be backed up. There is no OBLIGATION to admire Mandela, I don’t.

  7. oh and for you nonbelievers…I bet he dances into nowhere, with a smile on his face.

  8. He means much more to his people than Reagan and Thatcher meant to the Americans and British. He is a vastly more important international figure as well.

  9. David, I wasn’t referring to you as being cynical or lazy. I was just stating that I wasn’t being cynical in saying that I laugh at some comments/posts. A long time ago, comments/posts used to get my blood boiling. It doesn’t anymore. Innocent victims of ‘warfare’ should always be first and foremost in our thoughts and prayers. After so many years, I’ve come to respect that you and I admire different things and people…and it is no wonder given the vast differences in our upbringing and culture.

  10. “SA’s transition to democracy could have been an absolute bloodbath.”

    It is a bloodbath.

    Since that transition to democracy (1994), more white farmers have been murdered in SA than the entire death toll throughout the Troubles. That’s a bloodbath by any standards.

  11. I didn’t say that your list was lazy either David just that it is ourageously exaggerated hyperbole or completely untrue.

    I bet his victims don’t

    Who were his victims, can you name them?

  12. Phantom,

    ‘He means much more to his people than…..’

    I’m sure he does, – but then when a community is united, isn’t the task that much easier? – and I am sure they were far more united than either of our two leaders had to deal with – after all, there is nothing quite like a deep seated hatred to engender that certain ‘togetherness’, as we have seen demonstrated all too often in recent years.

    He certainly seems to have ‘bought the message home to the people’, – but it is such a pity that he didn’t have anyone of a similar calibre to pass it on to. All it seems is that South Africa has exchanged one sort of tyranny for another, possibly a more barabaric one.

  13. More white farmers have been murdered in SA than the entire death toll throughout the Troubles

    Except of course troubles deaths refer to a state with a population of slightly over a million people while SA is a country of almost fifty million.

  14. How many white farmers are there?

    If we include all attacks and all murders and all victims, the violence is far in excess of NI.

  15. All it seems is that South Africa has exchanged one sort of tyranny for another, possibly a more barabaric one

    That’s a view I wouldn’t necessarily disagree with Ernest although I don’t think that Mandela can be castigated in any way at his handeling of the transition.

  16. If we include all attacks and all murders and all victims, the violence is far in excess of NI

    No one is disputing that SA is an extremely violent country.

  17. That blog that you link to is absolutely impartial with no agenda Allan.

    Paul – is that site to which I linked misreporting the murders of whites in SA? What is its agenda?

  18. If the greatest thing Nelson Mandela achieved was to come out of prison after 27 years and after receiving rapturous adulation from the black people of South Africa, avoid total bloody recriminations on the white regime he was indeed a great man.
    Whatever he was at the start of those 27 years he had changed by the time he came out, and for that reason he truly is a great human being.

  19. At the start of those 27 years he was a black man who stood up against the humiliation of his fellow Black Africans by their white ‘masters’ – and he continued and concluded that process after being incarcerated for 27 years by those who never had the right to imprison him in the first place. He did it with magnanimity, humour and good grace and the lives of a great many black and white South Africans were saved by his behaviour.

  20. He was a terrorist. A communist. A Jew hater. I can see his attraction for some.

    He was a terrorist? As the Zionist Irgun who blew up the King David Hotel in 1948 were terrorists. But Rightworld gives them a bye-ball.

  21. Begin’s Irgun killed British police and soldiers in killed Arab and British civilians in a number od incidents.

    But the wee lads didn’t mean it.

    And anyway were not the British responsible for the Holocaust or whatever? So lets give the Israelis a pass and pretend that all wrong is on the other side.

    Israel for a long time had exceptionally friendly relations with Pretoria. This included $600 million im atms sales o SA. That may have something to do with Mandela’s views on the Jewish state. He would have to have been a complete idiot to ignore that relationship.
    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/05/24/israels_most_illicit_affair

  22. Mandela quote that sums up his position on Israel: “We identify with the PLO because, just like ourselves, they are fighting for the right of self-determination. I support Israel’s right to exist, but that doesn’t mean that Israel has the right to retain the territories they conquered from the Arab world. It will be a grave mistake for us to consider our attitude towards Arafat on the basis of the Jewish community. We sympathise with the struggles of the Jewish people and their persecution, down the years. In fact, we have been very much influenced by the lack of racism among the Jewish communities. Arafat is a comrade in arms, and we treat him as such.”

    Lazar Sidelsky (Jewish), who took an interest in a young Mandela, gave him his first job as a law clerk and, in Mandela’s words, became his “first white friend. Arthur Goldreich (Jewish) hid Mandela when he was a fugitive Mandela. Nadine Gordimer helped write Mandela’s speech at his Rivonia Trial, at which Mandela’s co-defendant, Denis Goldberg, was also sentenced to life in prison. Mandela’s defense attorneys were Jewish. The list goes on.

    “I found Jews to be more broadminded than most whites on issues of race and politics, perhaps because they themselves have historically been victims of prejudice,” said Mandela.

  23. Peter – I think you missed that one so I’ll explain. In the video you will see Afrikaners who converted to Judaism and emigrated to Israel to then take land in the west bank. The question was put as to why Mandela apparently dislikes Israel and whether white South Africa’s close relationship with Israel may have had something to do with it.

  24. Mandela was a right bastard, Thatcher and Pinochet were lovely compassionate people of integrity… in some weird parallel universe.

  25. Get it right Petr, Mandela was a LEFT Bastard. That is what really explains a lot of the animosity towards him 😉

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