Most of my knowledge and understanding of this small man in physical stature comes from listening and watching him as he lived and led the relatively small country of Jordan. His ability to direct this small bastion of a country amidst the maze, and of the adjoining regional turmoil and violence, amazed me during his leadership. Although short in his physical stature, he stood figuratively as large, if not larger, than many other notable world leaders of the 20th century! As a statesman and politician at the heart of his views and opinions can be read and appreciated closely at http://kinghussein.gov.jo/ . Some of his more famous quotes are still being used today by ordinary people and world figures alike.
Furthermore, as a human being, most of my appreciation and understanding of his ideology and persona came from within the text of the autobiography of his wife, Her Majesty Queen Noor. In her autobiography entitled; A Leap of Faith: Memoirs of an Unexpected Life. http://www.litlovers.com/reading-guides/14-non-fiction/541-leap-of-faith-queen-noor .
I highly recommed this read to any historian interested in Middle Eastern affairs. Her captivating story of the real person behind the throne of Jordan revealed a man with a reverent sense of compassion not only for his own people, but for all others regardless of their color, ethnicity or race. His understanding of the complexities and dynamics of the political and religious context and history in which continues to engulf his region were second to none in being a mediator and negotiator while keeping his country for the most part neutral. His willingness to compromise, yet maintain his resolve toward his beliefs and fellow countrymen and borders, spoke volumes to leaders throughout the entire world who both secretly and publicly called upon him to seek advice and direction. All of this while the country of Jordan rests at the epicenter of the Christian, Jewish and Muslim birthplace, and is still in its relevant infancy of nationhood.
My continued acknowledgement and growing respect for the late King Hussein I came from the people and words spoken by those who lived peacefully as his subjects within the country. Their admiration and passion for their King was both evident and unrelenting. They spoke of the aforementioned in which affirmed his character. A great communicator, humanitarian and statesman were words most often repeated in characterizing him. He was a true servant leader. He was the kind of leader that often times rarely comes around any given generation. There a few countries who can attest their allegiance, appreciation and respect for their respective leaders past or present in the entire world.
Having the opportunity to visit his country for an extended period of time I could see physical evidence still paying tribute to his legacy after his passing over a decade ago. The character, convictions, kindness and humility of both his presence and leadership continues to be characterized today by the warm and friendly Jordanian people. As his birthday is celebrated tomorrow throughout the Kingdom I am sure he looks upon his people with much pride and love as they continue to remain positive, flourish in harmony, peace and stability, and love their homeland as much as he still does. Godspeed to this beautiful country with beautiful people!