Nightly News   |  December 05, 2013

How Mandela transformed the world

Leaders around the globe remember Nelson Mandela’s fearless generosity, leadership, and remarkable force for change. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> we said, reaction to the news of mandela 's death pouring in from around the globe. our chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell tracking it tonight from our washington bureau. andrea, what a public life .

>> reporter: the measure of the man, of his influence, his life is how the world reacted tonight. he transformed his world and ours, inspiring millions, including presidents and future kings . tweeting a favorite picture, bill clinton wrote, i will never forget my friend madiba, using the affectionate name by which he was known to his followers. prince william and the duchess of cambridge were at the film made for mandela 's biography.

>> extremely tragic news. we are reminded what an extraordinary and inspiring man mr. mandela was. my thoughts and prayers are with him and his family now.

>> reporter: tonight britain's prime minister david cameron .

>> tonight, one of the brightest lights of our world has gone out. nelson mandela was not just a hero of our time , but a hero of all time.

>> reporter: president bush 41 wrote, as president i watched in wonder as nelson mandela had the remarkable capacity to forgive his jailers, setting a powerful example of redemption and grace for us all. president george w. bush wrote, president mandela was one of the great forces for freedom and equality of our time. mandela set an example by visiting new zealand, forgiving the country that sent its teams to play rugby during the apartheid years. john key wrote mr. mandela was a force for change not only in south africa but around the world. mohamed ali tonight wrote his was a spirit born free , destined to soar above the rainbows. today his spirit is soaring through thns. he is now forever free . new york's cardinal dolan wrote nelson mandela was a hero to the world. his bravery in defending human rights against the great evil of apartheid made him a symbol of courage and dignity as well as an inspiration to people everywhere. and mandela 's friend archbishop desmond tutu wrote in his name, they were seeking our oneness as human beings . here is the new yorker magazine cover, a tribute to young mandela , the young freedom fighter . tonight bono wrote, in the end nelson mandela showed us how to love rather than hate. not because he had never surrendered to rage or violence but because he learned that love would do a better job. brian?

>> andrea mitchell in our d.c. bureau tonight. andrea, thanks.