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Nelson Mandela, his own words on….

6th Dec 2013

NELSON ROLIHLAHLA MENDELA HIS OWN WORDS ON…

 

…improving society

“A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of.”

 

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

 

… fighting racism & freedom

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

 

“Only free men can negotiate; prisoners cannot enter into contracts. Your freedom and mine cannot be separated. ”

 

“I hate race discrimination most intensely and in all its manifestations. I have fought it all during my life; I fight it now, and will do so until the end of my days.”

 

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”

 

“Money won’t create success, the freedom to make it will. ”

 

“When a man is denied the right to live the life he believes in, he has no choice but to become an outlaw.”

 

…character & self-development

 

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”

 

“Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.”

 

“A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.”

“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.”

 

“If I had my time over I would do the same again. So would any man who dares call himself a man.”

 

“I like friends who have independent minds because they tend to make you see problems from all angles.”

 

“After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.”

 

…perseverance

 

“Difficulties break some men but make others. No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end. ”

 

“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”

 

“Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do.”

 

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”

 

…poverty

 

“Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is people who have made poverty and tolerated poverty, and it is people who will overcome it. And overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of justice. It is the protection of a fundamental human right, the right to dignity and a decent life.”

 

…leadership

 

“A leader. . .is like a shepherd. He stays behind the flock, letting the most nimble go out ahead, whereupon the others follow, not realizing that all along they are being directed from behind.”

 

“It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.”

 

“Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for freedom of their people.”

 

“When a man has done his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity.”

 

 

…. MIDDLE EAST/MUSLIM ISSUES….

 

…on the region

 

“We would be beneath our own reason for existence as government and as a nation, if the resolution of the problems of the Middle East did not feature prominently on our agenda. ”

 

…on Libya

 

“How can they (Americans) have the arrogance to dictate to us where we should go or which countries should be our friends? Gadhafi is my friend. He supported us when we were alone and when those (USA, EU etc) who tried to prevent my visit here (Libya) today were our enemies. They have no morals. We cannot accept that a state assumes the role of the world’s policeman.”

 

…on the Palestinian struggle

 

“We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”

 

“When in 1977, the United Nations passed the resolution inaugurating the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people, it was asserting the recognition that injustice and gross human rights violations were being perpetrated in Palestine. In the same period, the UN took a strong stand against apartheid; and over the years, an international consensus was built, which helped to bring an end to this iniquitous system. ”

 

…2003 invasion of Iraq

 

“It’s a tragedy what is happening, what Bush is doing. All Bush wants is Iraqi oil. There is no doubt that the US is behaving badly. Why are they not seeking to confiscate weapons of mass destruction from their ally Israel? This is just an excuse to get Iraq’s oil. ”

 

“Bush is now undermining the United Nations. He is acting outside it, not withstanding the fact that the United Nations was the idea of President Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. Both Bush, as well as Tony Blair, are undermining an idea which was sponsored by their predecessors. They do not care. Is it because the secretary-general of the United Nations [Ghanaian Kofi Annan] is now a black man? They never did that when secretary-generals were white. ”

 

“If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don’t care for human beings. ”

 

“What I am condemning is that one power, with a president [George W. Bush] who has no foresight, who cannot think properly, is now wanting to plunge the world into a holocaust. ”

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