Most revolutionary political figures consider compromise a dirty word and a sign of weakness. Yet Mandela consistently preached pragmatism, and many of his defining moments involved acts of flexibility, reconciliation and magnanimity.
It was the spring of 1999 in Moscow, and two of the 20th century's great revolutionary leaders, South Africa's Nelson Mandela and Russia's Boris Yeltsin, were having their first face-to-face talks as presidents of their nations. Yeltsin was struggling, but with a few simple gestures, Mandela changed the narrative.
Many Syrians fled their country and took refuge just across the border, planning to wait out the war. But now, a growing number are working with smugglers to get to northern Europe. The Syrians say they see no end in sight to the civil war and want to start a new life.
The founder of Pakistan's classic car club hops in his 1954 Austin-Healey and drives from one end of the troubled country to the other with his wife and friends. Why? Mostly because it's fun, but also as a statement of defiance to those causing havoc in Pakistan.
The world wants Syria's chemical arsenal destroyed. But so far, no country has offered to do the dirty work on its soil. Over the past week, an alternative has gained ground: Carry out the destruction at sea. The plan taking shape is complicated and untested, but it just might work.
The transition from one role to the other is difficult, and many have failed making the attempt. Nelson Mandela was a rare example who succeeded in both jobs. In addition, he willingly stepped down after one term in office, setting an example for a young democracy.
Shell's new vessel is so large that if you stood it up, it would be taller than the Empire State Building. It will be anchored 300 miles off the coast of Australia to handle liquefied natural gas.
Radio producer Joe Richman tells the story of how he discovered the tape of Nelson Mandela's famous speech at his 1964 sabotage trial, where he was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
China's leaders hope to be able to fight and win two regional conflicts by 2020, according to the Pentagon in a report that highlights the East China Sea, site of recent tensions with the U.S. and Japan. The showdown over air space is the latest example of what the Pentagon sees as a resurgent Chinese military.
Having trouble wrapping your head around southern Europe's staggering unemployment problem? This week, Ikea advertised for 400 jobs in a new megastore on Spain's Mediterranean coast. It got more than 20,000 online applicants in 48 hours, before the retailer's computer servers crashed.