To Capture a Nation (“When they drew Obama on paper, they never noticed that their candidate was also lazy, narcissistic and dull as proverbial dish washer when unattached from a Teleprompter”) Author - Judi McLeod
History silently records, one by one, the every-so-often, blood-letting despots and the palace revolts that change countless human lives for the worse down through the ages.
Blood curdling screams of the people despots massacre on their way to power remain indelible on human memory even centuries after the palace revolts.
Often part of someone else’s chess board, despots move in darkness by stealth.
Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi seized power in a bloodless military coup from King Idris in 1969 and served as the country’s head of state until 1977, when he stepped down from his official executive role as Chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council of Libya and claimed subsequently to be merely a symbolic figurehead. He styled himself as “Leader of the Revolution”; as recently as 2008, a meeting of traditional African leaders bestowed on him the title “King of Kings”.
The cursed name of Idi Amin Dada still draws shudders from just the memory of his reign of terror. Amin was the military dictator and third President of Uganda a long and tortuous eight years from 1971 to 1979. This despot could lay claim to a past that saw him joining the British colonial regiment, the King’s African Rifles back in 1946. Eventually he held the rank of Major General in the post-colonial Ugandan Army, and became its Commander before seizing power in the military coup of January 1971, deposing Milton Obote. He later promoted himself to Field Marshal while he was the head of state. Interesting to remember that while serving in the British Regiment, Amin toured Kenya.
Amin’s rule was characterized by gross human rights abuse, political repression, ethnic persecution, extrajudicial killings, nepotism, corruption, and gross economic mismanagement. The number of people killed as a result of his regime is estimated by international observers and human rights groups to range from 100,000 to 500,000. (Wikipedia)
All despots and dictators create auras in which they star as heroic saviors of repressed peoples. Horror show Papa “Doc” Duvalier first won public acclaim in fighting diseases, earning him the nickname “Papa Doc”. He opposed a military coup d’etat in 1950, and was elected president in 1957 on a populist and black nationalist platform. His rule, based on a purged military, a rural militia and the use of a personality cult and voodoo, resulted in the murder of an estimated 30,000 Haitians and an ensuing “brain drain” from which the country has still not recovered.
via To Capture a Nation.
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