While continuing my study of great leaders, naturally George Washington is a must read. George is an incredible individual in so many ways, but his standout achievement comes after he conquered the British. Washington was in a position to make himself a king, he was wildly popular with just about everyone in the colonies, and he controlled the army. His peers noted that if after he'd completed his campaign against the British, his true test of character faced him. Would he seize power? Others had used opportunities like this to acquire power, wealth and fame. Look today at the tyrants of the Middle East, their whole country is ready to lynch them, yet they won't cede power. They only remain in power because they control the nation's army. One would think someone could point to how George Washington rose to the title "The Father of Our Country" a revered historical figure, the apex of morality and character, and a man who his contemporaries held in awe throughout history as an example of greatness. What was his single greatest accomplishment? He ceded power, not once but twice. He not only turned down the chance to be king of the new world, but after he was overwhelmingly elected to the office of President, he walked away after just two terms. He did what he felt was best for his country, leaving behind a legacy.
Do you think the tyrants of the embattled Middle East could use a dose of this kind of long term vision? Has anyone pointed out to them how to leave a legacy that'd last generations? They opt for short term power and wealth, and ignore their place in history. Which lasts longer, the title "Father of our Country," or irrational tyrant? Perhaps it's time they looked at the lessons this great man left behind for the world to emulate, and step down for the good of their nation.