There are really no extraordinary men; there are ordinary men who rise to the challenge in extraordinary times and standout from the rest of mankind because they can function when the world is crippled by fear.
George Washington was the Father of Our Country. Without him as our Commander-in-Chief and our President for two terms, the American Revolution would have been a footnote in English history wherein the King had crushed another rebellion and the British Empire had moved on.
Instead, he improbably beat the toughest and largest army on the planet and formed a country from scratch.
George Washington rose to the occasion and changed the course of history.
George Catlett Marshall, Jr.
In World War II, George Catlett Marshall Jr. (my alma mater, VMI 1901) became the Chief of Staff of the Army — it was the top military job at the time — on the same day that Hitler invaded Poland. One tale I heard is he was out for his usual early morning ride and when he came back he received the news and went directly to work.
In the weeks ahead, he calmly developed a plan to increase the size of the American fighting force to 215 divisions — we had had 4 divisions and were almost at 14 by then — sufficient force to fight two wars on opposite sides of the world and defeat both of our enemies decisively.
Over the next 3 1/2 years, he raised, armed, and deployed 91 divisions in the greatest startup effort in American history as measured by vanquishing the world’s enemies and defeating evil. Soundly.
None other than Winston Churchill anointed Marshall as the Architect of Victory.
After retiring from the Army with five stars, Marshall would serve with similar distinction as the US Envoy to China, the Secretary of State, the architect of the Marshall Plan that saved Europe from Communism, the Secretary of Defense, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and the President of the American Red Cross.
Approached sitting peaceably in his garden with a lucrative offer to write his memoirs, he is reported to have said, “I did not enter public service to aggrandize my purse.”
Who are these great men? They are men whose character was revealed by the friction of their times.
All of the above brings us to this:
Volodymyr Oleksandrovych Zelenskyy is the President of Ukraine and the face of The Resistance. He is a former comedian, actor, and has a law degree though he has never practiced law.
He ran on a platform of being anti-establishment and anti-corruption and was elected by a 73% v 27% majority in the second round of a single elimination beauty contest. It was a very unlikely win, but Ukraine was ready to move on from corruption.
He also promised to regain control over Crimea — invaded and stolen by Russia in 2014 — and to end the fighting in Donbas, also initiated by Russia in 2014.
Zelenskyy is a tech savvy, social media native and has used it to great effect. As a wartime President, he is defiant in the face of an unprovoked onslaught by Russia and its bat shit crazy maniacal leader.
One thing worth noting is that not only is Zelenskyy a patriot and a war time defiant leader; but, he is a master of symbolism.
Look at Z is for Zelenskyy’s war time garb.
Look at Putin the Pimp’s war time garb — a $15,000 Italian designer down coat.
Ukraine will be pounded, but they will never surrender and much of that defiance and determination is because of a single ordinary man who has risen to the occasion in extraordinary times.
Bravo and Godspeed, Ukraine!