I had a very interesting conversation at church the other day with somebody who knew a lot about Antonio José de Sucre and who mentioned his loyalty and humanity – this inspired me to write a Sucre appreciation article.
1. His loyalty.
Even when the world turned against Bolivar, when he lost popular opinion, and everybody seemingly hated him – Sucre stood by him. Sucre believed Bolivar was right, and although it would have been politically advantageous to leave Bolivar, Sucre refused. He offered Bolivar advice and tried to mend the wounds of the country – but stood firm to his own convictions and to his friendship.
2. His advice.
Sucre was not afraid to tell Bolivar when he was doing something that would end badly. Bolivar relied on Sucre as the friend who was always there with solid advice and a good moral compass. Sucre was not overly ambitious and not as much of a spotlight person, but he truly wanted to help make Gran Colombia a better place.
Bolivar was a great person with many talents, as was Sucre. They were different, but their skills complemented each other well.
3. His diplomacy.
Sucre always tried to find common ground between Bolivar (his best friend) and Santander (Bolivar's worst enemy). He sought to create unity in a society that was rigidly divided. He wanted the republic to last and knew how to make peace at a time of intense strife.
4. His courage to fight for what he loved.
Bolivar and San-Martin possessed this too. Sucre displayed a striking loyalty to his friends and ideals. He was dependable and logical. As much as he was loyal to Bolivar (because of his friendship with him), it made him even more willing to tell Bolivar when he was making a mistake.
5. His compassion.
After the surrender of the Spaniards, Sucre was able to make a just peace that respected the other side as long as they respected the new nations. Bolivar said of Sucre, "This treaty is worthy of General Sucre's soul. Benignity, clemency, the genius of charity, dictated it. It will be eternal as a most beautiful emblem of mercy applied to war. It will be eternal as is the name of the victor of Ayacucho."
6. His great insights.
In his letters to Bolivar and others, Sucre offered predictions on politics in accordance with his knowledge of human nature and history. He helped to guide Bolivar and other friends into knowing which traps to avoid and had a good knowledge on how humans worked and how to find common ground with people very different from himself (and people with similar goals). His observations about hatred leading to further problems down the road if left unaddressed ring very true to our world today.
Bolivar also had many powerful insights on politics and human nature. To be honest, both he and Sucre would have been perfect in the think tank world of today.
7. His ability to do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.
So this Bible verse (and Jewish saying) made me think of Sucre. His whole period in politics was spent on doing justice to those who deserved it, to showing mercy to others, and to walking humbly (as a friend of mine mentioned).
Sucre was a true statesman, and, with Bolivar and many others, stands as one of the heroes of the 19th century.
He was not perfect, but he was a great person who deserves to be discussed more often. He combined justice and mercy and stood firm to his best friend. Sucre helped Bolivar and the others create a better world.