Calling Mandela a Communist or a terrorist shortly after his death is mean-spirited, but it is a bigger condemnation of the moral blindness of much of U.S. foreign policy during the Cold War than it is a criticism of Mandela.
The Nelson Mandela of the 21st century is right here, right now. We just can't see it. We're too busy spitting on him and calling him a terrorist.
Madiba was that singular, solid, reassuring force for a country slowly, fitfully transforming itself from one of the world's most oppressive regimes into one of its most progressive young democracies.
Any objective perspective on Iran has to step back to include its opponents in the overview. Why is it that the loudest yelps against Iran's alleged nuclear capability come from Israel, a state that itself has a large nuclear arsenal?
In late February of 1990, just two weeks after being released from prison, Nelson Mandela met with Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasir Arafat. Afterwards Mandela spoke publicly of his affinity with the Palestinian people and his support for their struggle.
Since overthrowing the government in March, Seleka forces, an alliance of predominantly Muslim armed groups, have ruled through the gun and with terror, attacking and burning down Christian villages, killing and wounding untold numbers of people.
It is not that both were not ambitious men who aspired to power -- they both certainly were. It is that they both were leaders who understood that, as Voltaire said, with great power comes great responsibility.
Amidst the flurry of debate over Iran's trustworthiness and willingness to transform itself into a responsible regional power, the destabilizing presence of the Quds Force cannot be ignored.
There will be so much written about Nelson Mandela in the wake of his passing -- about his personal history, the struggle for equality in South Africa, his political contributions -- but, I fear, there will be little discussion about his impact on the arts of South Africa, and the world.
We appeal to God's mercy and grace that He may protect and illumine all people involved so that no further hurt might be inflicted
Nelson Mandela was a man of many gifts. Perhaps the most powerful was his ability to speak truth to power. That is why he consistently spoke out against nuclear weapons. He saw no difference in fighting the bomb, colonialism, or racism.
As I await my new toy, fighter jets from Japan, South Korea, China and the United States track each other warily over the very same sea. Trade between our economies has not created true trust between our governments.
I had the good fortune to meet Mr. Mandela in 1994 in my homeland of South Africa, days before the historic elections. The journey leading to that meeting was a long one, a circle, a return to my childhood.
Americans have been fighting in Afghanistan for longer than the Civil War, World War I, and World War II combined. America has overstayed its welcome. It's time to go home.
The last decades of my life -- like that of so many Cubans -- have been a kind of unfulfilled forecasts, scenarios that never materialize, and archived hopes. A sequence of cabals, rites of divination and staring at the moon, that collide head-on with the stubborn reality.
Mandela became our conscience. He transcended race and class. His thought was on the collective, not his individual pain. He was an authentic leader who never claimed to be perfect. His is a story of transformation, from militant freedom fighter to peacemaker.
Some 66 senators now back negotiations with Havana over Gross. Obama won Florida with 50 percent of the Cuban-American vote. What, exactly, is the president waiting for?
He spoke with warmth and sincerity and reached out for understanding and reconciliation. Yet, it was clear that when his core positions were in issue, he was steel encased in velvet.
It didn't take one prominent neocon long to figure out that that the Iran deal -- and the prospect of ending the stalemate with Iran without recourse to war -- has put the Democrats in a box.