Rabbi Eli Mansour describes the traits of a great leader, as evidenced by Moshe Rabbeinu who descended from Mount Sinai, only to observe Bnei Yisrael busy with the golden calf.
In short, the people made and worshipped the golden calf thinking that Moshe
Rabbenu had died. And yet, the Torah tells that on the day they committed this
sin, “Va’yakumu Le’sahek” – “They arose to make merry.” The worship was
accompanied by frivolous merriment and festivity. There was song, dance, and all
manner of exuberant celebration. Moshe had every reason to feel terribly
offended by the people’s jubilation. After all he had done for them, leading
them out of Egypt and through the sea, caring for them like a faithful shepherd
and bringing them the Torah, here they were celebrating what they thought was
his death. No mourning, no grief, no eulogies – only celebration and
But this did not bother Moshe or affect his commitment to the
people one iota. He understood that this is not personal. Moshe did not say to
himself, “What an ungrateful people!” Rather, he thought, “It’s not their fault.
They’re frail, they were only recently freed from generations of harsh slavery.
This is not about me.” And therefore he did not give up on them or reject them.
He pleaded courageously and passionately on their behalf, effectively saving
them from annihilation.
This is a true model of greatness. Moshe here
shows us the ability to separate his personal feelings from the people’s needs.
His mind was focused not on his ego, on the respect and consideration owed to
him, but rather on what was best for the people.
Read full devar Torah: http://www.dailyhalacha.com/WeeklyParasha.asp
What a novel idea that a leader should think of his people first and put aside his ego.
Reuters describes the problems encountering John Kerry in light of his visit to Turkey and the offensive comments made by the Turkish leader.
A row over Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's description of Zionism as a crime against humanity risked overshadowing U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's visit to Turkey on Friday, his first to a Muslim nation since taking office.
..."This was particularly offensive, frankly, to call Zionism a crime against humanity ... It does have a corrosive effect (on relations)," a senior U.S. official told reporters as Kerry flew to Ankara.
"I am sure the secretary will be very clear about how dismayed we were to hear it," the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.
Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/01/us-usa-turkey-idUSBRE9200EB20130301