Newsweek, a prestigious US journal, included Colombian President Alvaro Uribe in a list of national leaders they consider to have radically transformed their respective countries in a short space of time.
Selected for their success in rapidly reinventing the national culture and politics of their countries, Uribe and his Brazilian counterpart Luis Inacio Lula da Silva are the only Latin American leaders among the list of 11 ‘transformers’ of the post-war era.
The rescue of 15 high profile hostages held by the guerrilla group FARC on July 2 2008 is considered a pinnacle of Uribe’s career along with his work to dismantle right-wing paramilitary factions who have been responsible for much violence across the country, the article explains.
Uribe’s “actions have made him so popular that his supporters were able to change the Constitution twice to allow him to run for a second and … possibly a third, term”.
Among some of Newsweek’s chosen leaders are Nelson Mandela (South Africa), Margaret Thatcher (Britain), Kim Dae-Jung (South Korea) and Gamal Abdel Nasser (Egypt).