>During our founding, when we were a nation of 3 million, transcendent leaders emerged. Think of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison. In the Civil War, perhaps our greatest president, Abraham Lincoln, and his cabinet held the United States together when it was close to coming apart, an extraordinary chapter of our history.

In the 1930s and 1940s, another generation of great American leaders confronted the despair of the Great Depression and rallied the nation to confront the threat of fascism. Franklin Roosevelt, George Marshall, Dwight Eisenhower, Harry Truman, Omar Bradley–all were leaders of wisdom, common sense, and modesty.

Where are their like today?


The United States was the leader of the 20th century. It could and should be the leader of the 21st century. But this will require a kind of farsighted leadership that reconfigures the balance between America’s longer-term interest and short-term partisan politics.

This is an excerpt from an editorial written by Mortimer B. Zuckerman

Full Mortimer B. Zuckerman: Focusing on the future in America

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