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President Barack Hussain Obama described Mr Mandela as the  'last  great liberator of the 20th

 

 

century' and compared him to Ghandi  and Martin  Luther King in a powerful address to the crowds.

Mr Obama opened his speech by thanking  Mandela's family, then continued: 'To the people of South Africa - people of  every race and walk of life - the world thanks you for sharing Nelson Mandela  with us.

'Your dignity and hope found expression in  his life, and your freedom, your democracy is his cherished legacy.

'Mandela taught us the power of action, but  also ideas; the  importance of reason and arguments; the need to study not only  those you agree with, but those who you don't.'

Referring to the anti-apartheid icon's  friendship with his own prison warders,  the President said: 'It took a man like  Madiba to free not just the  prisoner, but the gaoler as well.'

He also spoke out against the  dictators from  countries such as Zimbabwe and China who pay lip service  to Mandela's legacy  while repressing their own people, saying: 'There  are too many of us who  happily embrace Madiba's legacy of racial  reconciliation, but passionately  resist even modest reforms that would  challenge chronic poverty and growing  inequality.

'There are too many leaders who claim  solidarity with Madiba's struggle for  freedom, but do not tolerate dissent from  their own people. And there  are too many of us who stand on the sidelines,  comfortable in  complacency or cynicism when our voices must be  heard.'

'THANK YOU FOR SHARING MADIBA': HIGHLIGHTS OF OBAMA'S  HEARTFELT EULOGY FOR NELSON MANDELA

To the people of South Africa - people of  every race and walk of life - the world thanks you for sharing Nelson Mandela  with us. His struggle was your struggle. His triumph was your  triumph.

Born during World War I, far from the  corridors of power, a boy raised herding cattle and tutored by elders of his  Thembu tribe - Madiba would emerge as the last great liberator of the 20th  century.

He was not a bust made of marble; he was a  man of flesh and blood - a son and husband, a father and a friend.

Mandela showed us the power of action; of  taking risks on behalf of our ideals.

Mandela understood the ties that bind the  human spirit. There is a word in South Africa - 'Ubuntu' - that describes his  greatest gift: his recognition that we are all bound together in ways that can  be invisible to the eye; that there is a oneness to humanity; that we achieve  ourselves by sharing ourselves with others, and caring for those around  us.

It took a man like Madiba to free not just  the prisoner, but the gaoler as well; to show that you must trust others so that  they may trust you; to teach that reconciliation is not a matter of ignoring a  cruel past, but a means of confronting it with inclusion, generosity and truth.  He changed laws, but also hearts.

There are too many of us who happily embrace  Madiba’s legacy of racial reconciliation, but passionately resist even modest  reforms that would challenge chronic poverty and growing inequality. There are  too many leaders who claim solidarity with Madiba’s struggle for freedom, but do  not tolerate dissent from their own people. And there are too many of us who  stand on the sidelines, comfortable in complacency or cynicism when our voices  must be heard.

We will never see the likes of Nelson  Mandela again. But let me say to the young people of Africa, and young people  around the world - you can make his life’s work your own.

Over thirty years ago, while still a student,  I learned of Mandela and the struggles in this land. It stirred something in me.  It woke me up to my responsibilities - to others, and to myself - and set me on  an improbable journey that finds me here today. And while I will always fall  short of Madiba’s example, he makes me want to be  better.

But I believe it should also be a period of  self-reflection. With honesty, regardless of our  station or circumstance, we  must ask:  how well have I applied his  lessons in my own life? It's a  question I ask myself as a man and as a  President. We can't allow our progress  to cloud the fact that our struggle is not done

''We will never see the likes of Nelson  Mandela again but let me say to  young people in South Africa and around the  world, you too can make his  life work your own.

The U.S. President added: 'After this great  liberator is laid to rest; when we have returned to our cities and villages, and  rejoined our daily routines, let us search then for his strength - for his  largeness of spirit - somewhere inside ourselves. 

'And when the night grows dark, when  injustice weighs heavy on our hearts, or our best laid plans seem beyond our  reach - think of Madiba, and the words that brought him comfort within the four  walls of a cell: It matters not how  strait the gate, how charged with  punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate: I  am the captain of my soul.'


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President Obama along with First Lady  Michelle led an American  delegation of former presidents and their families

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2521300/Obama-shakes-hands-... Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Barack Obama paid an emotional tribute to his  personal hero Mandela, calling the South African leader a 'giant of  history'.

He said: 'He changed views but he also  changed hearts. For the people of South Africa, for the people he inspired  around the globe, his passing is rightly a time of mourning and a time to  celebrate his life.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2521300/Obama-shakes-hands-... Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

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Comment by Bilal Mahmud المكافح المخلص on December 11, 2013 at 7:09pm

Comment by Bilal Mahmud المكافح المخلص on December 11, 2013 at 7:10pm

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