David and Christian hit on the point I was making.
I truly believe that Ueshiba M. knew exactly what he meant when he spoke about and manifested Aikido in a physical form. I am also pretty sure that many of his Deshi (at least those who formulated their own methods to deal with his Aiki paradigm) may not have understood absolutely everything that he said and did but found their own ways of dealing with this in their own evolution.
It is a great idea to take the words and deeds of Ueshiba M. as a template for one's evolution in Aikido and the definition of those boundaries. However imho if highly skilled exponents of Japanese Budo who were his direct students training for years (and who had the benefit of Japanese as their native tongue) had to "forge" what they learned from Ueshiba M. in their own spirits and manifest their own Aiki based on his teachings (often resulting in their best approximation of his teaching) then it is unbelievable that an individual who is divorced from the context of Ueshiba M.'s reality in time, space, language and other areas can speak categorically about anything to do with his Aikido.
There are however certain "commonly held" tenets that define Ueshiba M.'s Aikido that one can use as a guide. But I think in the end one must stand on the shoulders of one's teachers, including Ueshiba M. and attempt to become more, even explore concepts that he was unwilling or unable to. In this way one becomes a true asset to his legacy imho. I think many of his Deshi did this and there is no reason why someone who practices today cannot do this. But like David said, it is important to let go of his image a bit to see clearly with our own eyes. It comes down to whether we want to emulate the messenger or his message.
Of course I am a Shodo-heathen so take everything above with a grain of salt.