President Trump’s former secretary of defense, retired Gen. James Mattis, responded to The Atlantic (June 6, 2020), on the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis: “Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people – does not even pretend to try. Instead he tried to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequence of three years without mature leadership.”“Leadership” is the key word to analyze in order to understand the leaders of the era in which we live in. Three basic qualities are required from a true leader. First, he must have a charismatic personality. Charisma is a born trait of leadership and personal charm that generates great popular support. A trait that manifests the idea of “I will follow that person through hell.” The second quality required from a leader is wisdom, in the sense of the ability consider and decide level-headedly what is the wheat and what is the chaff, what are the right priorities, what is the right thing to do, and more than that, what not to do, in order not to cross the border between courage and stupidity. The third quality required from a leader is to be a human being. The leader must set a personal example, project reliability, be sensitive to the problems of those who serve under him, and behave not just as a ruler but also as an educator.The leader’s supreme responsibility is all-inclusive and cannot be divided, whether the leader executes a vision or idea, moves people into action, or carries out a mission. He is the source, the innovator and the developer. He has the longest and widest view. He asks what and how, not why and when. He does the right thing not things right. He strives to expand his scope of responsibilities.Unfortunately, the era of the truly great leaders has ended. Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Churchill, Stalin, de Gaulle, Mao, Ben-Gurion, Gandhi and Nehru – we don’t have leaders like these today. In this day and age, the first test we as citizens put our leaders through is whether in their speech and actions they unite or divide us. I wholeheartedly agree with Gen. Mattis’s statement. I can attest that my own prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, in his speech and actions, divides and does not unite. The question is: Why do divisive leaders do that? What is their motive? I can think of a few answers.THE FIRST would be their wishes to preserve their rule. If they can convince their political base that the opposition, the media, Deep State, law enforcement and justice system are guilty of everything that is going wrong in the country they have a reason to ask that base to give them the mandate, extend their term in office so that they can rectify all the wrongs for which they supposedly bear no responsibility.The second reason I would call the “strong leader” syndrome (instead of the enlightened leader). In the world of fake news, the entire values set we grew up on went haywire. Lies are “Alternative Truths” and everything that in the past was illegitimate has become legitimate. In a photo where we saw former president Obama eulogize slain children, we saw him choking on his tears mid-speech. President Trump communicates via the cold and alienated Twitter. Obama walked down the street, hand-in-hand with the people. Trump walk down the street surrounded by bodyguards, disengaged from his citizens. Obama’s speech is inclusive, Trump’s is threatening. The police’s job is to maintain law and order and protect the citizens. The National Guard’s job is to step in during civilian emergencies. The military’s job is to fight enemies, beyond the borders of the country. Trump insists on deploying the military against his citizens as his first priority. It is clear he is power-drunk. The message he sends to the American people is, whatever we can’t solve with force we will solve with more force!Unfortunately, Benjamin Netanyahu suffers the same syndrome. The product of the above equation between the ruler and his citizens is therefore not unity, equality and solidarity, but rather one of rulers and natives alienated from one another.Officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee to George Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 43 seconds! While Floyd was later lying on the road next to his police cruiser, Chauvin was likely convinced that he was following his president’s messages.The president needs to unite families who have lost 120,000 relatives to COVID-19, solve unemployment for tens of millions, contend with civil protests that spread all over the country and dampen the fuel of blatant racism. Instead, that president finds time to go to Florida for the weekend to watch the launch of the first American private sector spaceship, an endeavor that the president had nothing to do with but which provided him with a powerful photo op.When one sees that in Manhattan, the capital of the world, refrigerated tractor trailers are parked every couple of blocks and loading corpses of COVID-19 victims, and Fifth Avenue is boarded up to fend off rampant vandalism, one cannot but whisper to one’s self: This is the number-one superpower in the world, a superpower that significantly contributed to the world in every field, and it is now dying. How sad!The writer is the former director of the Mossad and the author of the forthcoming book Head of the Mossad – In Pursuit of a Safe and Secure Israel (Notre Dame University Press).