View of part of the Fujairah Corniche and the Hajar Mountains in the Background

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sheikh Zayed Named by Newsweek as one of the Postwar Transformers

Sheikh Zayed, the ‘father of the nation of the UAE, has been named as one of the ‘transformers’—postwar leaders who radically remade their countries (‘bringing drastic social, economic or political change) during their time in office.

He is associated in this galaxy with Brazil’s Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, China’s Deng Xiaoping, Britain’s Margaret Thatcher, Egypt’s Gamal Abdel Nasser, Poland’s Lech Walesa and South Africa’s Nelson Mandela.

The following statement is made about Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who served in public office for 33 years in the UAE:

“Although he was born in a tent at an isolated oasis on the Arabian peninsula in 1918, Zayed created the blueprint for the United Arab Emirates as a modern, relatively tolerant regional economic powerhouse. Born into the ruling family of Abu Dhabi, he worked with the British overlords of Trucial Oman to depose his older brother and take power in 1966. He then convinced rulers of the other emirates in Trucial Oman to unite after the British withdrawal, forming the United Arab Emirates in 1971. As president from independence until his death in 2004, he liberalized policies on women's rights and religious tolerance, which still lagged behind much of the world but improved on other Persian Gulf countries and which laid the groundwork for the UAE's large population of Western professionals and rise as an international business center.”

Read the Entire Article by following this link:
David Graham, Transformers: When Leaders Radically Remake their Countries, Newsweek, 22 September 2009.

Reviewing Sheikh Zayed by Frances LaBonte, Reviewing Books and Movies, 27 May 2008.

Other Stories and Related Sites
Back to the Future Art Museum in Dubai, Experiencing the Emirates, 6 October 2009.

See Alinghi Settling into Base at Ras al Khaimah UAE, America’s Cup in the UAE, 7 October 2009.

See Why this Fujairah Resident Has a Smile on His Face, Fujairah in Focus, 7 October 2009.

Ricky Gervais Speaks of Being ‘Born Again’ to the Joy of Work, Stories for Speakers and Writers, 4 October 2009.

Dr Geoff Pound

Geoff can be contacted by email at geoffpound(at) on Facebook and Twitter.

Image: His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.