Mohammed bin Zayed: A leader full of surprises (Pt. 1)

Mohammed bin Zayed: A leader full of surprises (Pt. 1)

The leaders of the Gulf do not appear much, and little is known about their personalities and social life, and this is the case for the man who surprised the world a few days ago. Most of the media and people talked a few days ago about the decision to normalize relations with Israel, which was taken by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed.

And between abusive and praiseworthy, the name of Sheikh Mohammed echoed a lot and won the lion’s share in search engines, but .. Who is Mohammed bin Zayed?

Mohammed bin Zayed’s life

Sheikh Mohammed studied military sciences at the British “Sandhurst” College, where he received his training in armored weapons, and tactical and vertical “helicopter” flying. And he received courses in the Emirate of Sharjah and Egypt, so he is a very respectful figure.

After graduation, Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed worked as an officer in the Amiri Guard, and got a promotion to the ranks of the elite forces and then as a fighter pilot, learning from all this the speed of life and death decisions.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed married Sheikha Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, and they have four sons and five daughters: Maryam, Khaled, Shamsa, Diab, Hamdan, Fatima (after his mother’s name), Shama, Zayed (after his father’s name), and Hessa. His weakness is the great attachment to his grandchildren, whom he is keen to give the greatest care and affection for.

A testemony from an Egyptian journalist

Emad Adeeb, the prominent Egyptian journalist, quotes the Emirati Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash, who has worked closely for many years with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, as saying. “The man does not know extravagance in his life and tends to be simple in everything. Although he is able to live a legendary life.”

In his article published on Al-Watan website, Adeeb recounts details that clarify the nature of Sheikh Mohammed through their first meeting. He said: “Since the first meeting with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed. I have opened up to see the nature of his personality.”

Adeeb says, “It was the first meeting in 21 years with a special arrangement from my dear friend Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed. He at that time took over the media portfolio in the UAE.”

The meeting was a generous invitation to lunch at the famous fish restaurant at the InterContinental Abu Dhabi. On that day, Sheikh Abdullah surprised me, “After a few minutes, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed will join us. It is an opportunity for you to get to know the truth about this man, the human. He is an exceptional character.”

How humble can a leader be?

The table was full of food and guests who were praying in succession. And we used to see their arrival from behind the restaurant window. In fact I did not – at that time – know the features of Sheikh Mohammad. His appearance was on limit, says the prominent Egyptian journalist.

He started serving food in succession. After some time I whispered in Sheikh Abdullah’s ear. “It seems that Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed many concerns prevented him from sharing lunch with us”. Sheikh Abdullah laughed and replied. “Oh, sir, Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed is the one sitting next to you on the left shoulder to shoulder.”

Adeeb says, “I was under a stun. The man came in a regular Japanese car. He quietly signaled to the sitters not to stand while eating. He shook hands with me and said in a low voice. Welcome, Professor, with you Mohammed”. Therefore, I did not understand at that moment. This man is “the strong leader of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. He is influencing politically and militarily in the files of the UAE.”

To be continued…

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