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The Late Stoltenberg and Mandela


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): Medium (Humanist Voices)

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2018//07/21

According to The Nation, Thorvald Stoltenberg, born 1931 and died 2018, was a Norwegian political who died after an illness. He was active in the helping of refugees and others.

He helped those coming from Hungary post-1956 invasion by the Soviet Union. Stoltenberg was a member of the United Nations peace negotiating team. He was a diplomat and politician in the 1990s.

As reported, “He was for a short year high commissioner for refugees in 1990, but Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland called him back to serve as Norway’s foreign minister again; and he had earlier served both as deputy and full minister of foreign affairs and defence.”

He then retired from the political world. Later, his son, Jens, would be the prime minister and then the secretary general of NATO. Stoltenberg, the deceased, was also the chairman of the Norwegian Red Cross.

“ His two other children were Camilla, a medical researcher and administrator, and Nini, a lawyer by training, like her father, but a victim of the liberal ‘hashish and heroin era’ of the 1970s,” the reportage continued, “She passed away in 2014 at an age of 51, just two years after her mother Karin Stoltenberg (nèe Heiberg) passed away, leaving Thorvald Stoltenberg without his lifelong partner.”

He viewed Nini as the most kind and sweet person imaginable. The late Mr. Stoltenberg even work a book about her, in order to discover why she was a drug addict and also to see if there was a way for others to become clean.

“By the time she died, she was ‘clean’, but the heroin and other poisons had taken their toll on her organs and she just wasted away and died after a short illness,” the article explained.

The article then pivoted into the legacy of Nelson Mandela. It was the 100th anniversary of the birth of Nelson Mandela this year. He was seen as a humanistic idal of someone working for hope as a politician and as a statesperson.

“He based much of his thinking on his training and experience as a lawyer, with justice and fairness as cornerstones, My Pakistani lawyer friend Idrees Ashraf underlines the importance of his legal training and practice,” the article stated, “also continuing studies while in prison. Certainly, Mandela was a very unique and extraordinary man, yet also a very ordinary man, somebody who had met him told me.”

The report makes a comparison between both Stoltenberg and Mandela. With the unique abilities of each to connect with the people around them, an argued-for important capacity for encouraging individuals to do the right and good thing in the world.

Each person, the parallelism argues, were working on local and everyday things in addition to the universal concerns of everyone for a better world locally and internationally.

The reportage stated, “Mandela never denounced the use of violence in the struggle for justice in apartheid South Africa, or as a general principle, although he drew lessons from Mahatma Ghandi’s philosophy; yet, he rather said that those in power should refrain from use of violence. Stoltenberg, who i.a. served as minister of defence in Norway, was also not a pacifist.”


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


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