- He managed the transition from apartheid about as well as he could; he could have been Robert Mugabe on steroids, but he chose a different path. As a result, South Africa is one of the few countries on the African continent that isn't being run by an autocrat. That counts for a lot.
- He wasn't a saint, but he was wise enough to see the long-term implications of the path that the African National Congress could have taken. He got rid of his wife Winnie, who was a nasty piece of work, and while he did include his ANC colleague Joe Slovo (a full-on Communist) in his initial government, he didn't let Slovo run rampant. As it happened, Slovo died early on, but while he was alive he could have done a lot of damage. He didn't. More importantly, since Nelson Mandela left office at the appointed time, with an orderly transition of power, he set a precedent that has served his country well.
Friday, December 06, 2013
You can read many things about Nelson Mandela on the internet today. Two points I'd make: