When we overthrew Mubarak, we did this in 18 days. And because we were very naive and very unexperienced in revolutions, we thought that that was it. It is very difficult to imagine that you can actually get rid of a dictatorship that has been there for 60 years only in 18 days. So we were very naive.
And each one is a partaker of this spiritual origin in regeneration; and to every one when he is re-born, the water of baptism is like the Virgin's womb; for the same Holy Spirit fills the font, Who filled the Virgin, that the sin, which that sacred conception overthrew, may be taken away by this mystical washing.
Pope Leo I
Alternatively, suppose Qaddafi winds up hanging from a lamppost in his favorite party dress. If you're a Third World dictator, what lessons would you draw? Qaddafi was the thug who came in from the cold, the one who (in the wake of Saddam's fall) renounced his nuclear program and was supposedly rehabilitated in the chancelleries of the West. He was a strong partner in the war on terrorism, according to U.S. diplomats. And what did Washington do? They overthrew him anyway.
Then the lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of Heaven; and He overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. So it goes. Those were vile people in both those cities, as is well known. The world was better off without them. And Lot's wife, of course, was told not to look back where all those people and their homes had been. But she did look back, and I love her for that, because it was so human. So she was turned to a pillar of salt.
How can it be other than right to worship the Body of the Lord, all-holy and all-reverend as it is, announced as it was by the archangel Gabriel, formed by the Holy Spirit, and made the Vesture of the Word? It was at any rate a bodily hand that the Word stretched out to raise her that was sick of a fever (Mk. 1:31): a human voice that He uttered to raise Lazarus - the dead (Jn. 11:43); and, once again, stretching out His hands upon the Cross, He overthrew the prince of the power of the air, that now works (Eph. 2:2) in the sons of disobedience, and made the way clear for us into the heavens.
John of Kronstadt
And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise.
John the Apostle
After a duration of a thousand years, the power of astrology broke down when, with Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo, the progress of astronomy overthrew the false hypothesis upon which the entire structure rested, namely the geocentric system of the universe. The fact that the earth revolves in space intervened to upset the complicated play of planetary influences, and the silent stars, related to the unfathomable depths of the sky, no longer made their prophetic voices audible to mankind. Celestial mechanics and spectrum analysis finally robbed them of their mysterious prestige.
That's what I said the first time I was called a hero. But you're going to find that hero is a title other people give you; you don't really get a say in the matter. Now me, I'm the kind of hero that slays the dragon. I overthrew the ArchTyrant and ended the age of Ragnarok... ' he trailed off, his eyes distant. '... of course, ever since then I have been unable to reform the beauracrats and the nobles. Despite my best efforts, they beat me in the end.' He cleared his throat and looked up. 'Now you, on the other hand, you are a different kind of hero. You take the dragon home with you. You feed it, teach it, tame it, befriend it. You remove the threat by changing its heart, rather than actually slaying the beast
Aaron Lee Yeager
[from Some words about 'War and Peace'] For a historian considering the achievement of a certain aim, there are heroes; for the artist treating of a man's relation to all sides of life there cannot and should not be heroes, but there should be men. [... ] The historian has to deal with the results of an event, the artist with the fact of the event. An historian in describing a battle says: 'The left flank of such and such an army was advanced to attack such and such a village and drove out the enemy, but was compelled to retire; then the cavalry, which was sent to attack, overthrew... ' and so on. But these words have no meaning for the artist and do not actually touch on the event itself. Either from his own experience, or from the letters, memoirs, and accounts, the artist realizes a certain event to himself, and very often (to take the example of a battle) the deductions the historian permits himself to make as to the activity of such and such armies prove to be the very opposite of the artist's deductions. The difference of the results arrived at is also to be explained by the sources from which the two draw their information. For the historian (to keep to the case of a battle) the chief source is found in the reports of the commanding officers and the commander-in-chief. The artist can draw nothing from such sources; they tell him nothing and explain nothing to him. More than that: the artist turns away from them as he finds inevitable falsehood in them. To say nothing of the fact that after any battle the two sides nearly always describe it in quite contradictory ways, in every description of a battle there is a necessary lie, resulting from the need of describing in a few words the actions of thousands of men spread over several miles, and subject to most violent moral excitement under the influence of fear, shame and death.