As Governor of Texas, Bush presided over 152 executions, more than any other Governor in the USA since the death penalty was re-instated. He has repeatedly blocked environmental legislation to improve air quality and refused to commit the US to reducing pollution in line with the rest of the world. As President there is strong evidence to suggest that Bush did not win the election. There were claims his brother Jeb, Governor of Florida, helped out and evidence that Democrats were illegally struck from the voting register. He dodged the Vietnam conflict but was happy to lead a war on Afghanistan with the stated aim of catching Osama bin Laden which was completely unsuccessful, bringing further misery and death to a long suffering country. He also led another war on Iraq. He is right-wing, strongly religious when it comes to persecution, but not so when it comes to morality, and ultimately, like his father, he represents the interests of big business.
Idi Amin Dada Oumee was born in 1924 in Uganda. He was the Military Commander and President of Uganda from 1971 to 1979 after seizing power in a military coup. Amin also stirred up tribalism in Uganda to its extreme launching a campaign of persecution against rival tribes, murdering and torturing between 100,000 and 500,000 (most sources say 300,000). He expelled the country's 50,000 Indians and Pakistanis in 1972, challenged Britain and the United States, broke relations with Israel, and supported Libya and the Palestinians, even becoming personally involved when Palestinians hijacked a plane and ordered it fly to Entebbe in Uganda. After years of his military regime the country´s economy began to suffer and collapse, Amin invaded Tanzania in 1978 but assisted by Ugandan exiles the Tanzanian army was able to counter-attack and remove Amin from power. He lived comfortably in Saudi Arabia until his death in 2003.
The senior Bush made huge sums of money for his family out of being President. Like his son he has been accused of cronyism and blatant favoritism towards campaign contributers. He was a fan of Nixon, involved in all kinds of dubious dealings as head of the CIA and led the US to war with Iraq in 1991. After encouraging the Iraqis to rise against Saddam he shamelessly left them to die alone, pulling American forces out and leaving Saddam in charge. He was heavily involved in the Iran-Contra scandal over illegal arms dealing. George Bush now works for The Carlyle Group. They invest in defense companies, medical laboratories, and the telecommunications industry. The Carlyle Group is one of the government's biggest contractors. George Bush, Sr. and The Carlyle Group stand to make billions of dollars from the War on Terror. On September 11, The Carlyle Group was reportedly having a conference at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Washington, DC with members of the Bin Laden family, one of their investors.
The Leader of the Gang of Four is thought to have been responsible for somewhere between 20 and 67 million deaths (estimates vary) of his countrymen, including the elderly and intellectuals during the "Great Leap Forward" and the "Cultural Revolution". Mao presided over a huge personality cult encouraging, quite forcefully, the Chinese people to worship him. The resulting anarchy, terror, and paralysis completely disrupted the urban economy. However he did manage to raise China from being a broken, feudalistic anachronism to a united world force. His legacy is undeniably impressive but contradictory and confused and ultimately he caused death on a grand scale, whatever the intention.
Pol Pot was born in 1925 in the Kompong Thom province of Cambodia. He was the Khmer Rouge political leader whose totalitarian regime, from 1975 to 1979, imposed severe hardships on the people of Cambodia. His radical communist government forced the mass evacuations of cities, killed or displaced millions of people, and left a legacy of disease and starvation. Under his leadership, his government caused the deaths of at least one million people (maybe as many as 3 million) from forced labor, starvation, disease, torture, or execution.
Born in 1879. During the quarter of a century preceding his death in 1953, the Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin probably exercised greater political power than any other figure in history. In the 1930s, by his orders, millions of peasants were either killed or permitted to starve to death. Stalin brought about the deaths of more than 20 million of his own people. He doggedly held the Soviet Union in an iron grip for 29 years. Stalin succeeded Lenin in 1924 and from then on, he induced widespread famines to enforce farm collectives, and eliminated perceived enemies through massive purges.
The leader of the Nazi Party in Germany in the 1930´s and early 1940´s Adolf Hitler is probably the most infamous person in the world. He had a wide range of insanely right-wing ideas and a pathological hatred of Jews, whom he exterminated in their millions during the Holocaust. He seized power in a Germany, which was suffering under the conditions imposed after the Great War. Hitler was aggressive and determined and he brought a new misplaced pride to the German people. After invading a neighbour too far he led Germany into World War II and the result was a continent brought to its knees, destroyed and left indebted to the Cold War combatants. 66 million people died because of the second world war. Upon defeat Hitler is reputed to have killed himself in a bunker.
The President of Yugoslavia for 13 years, Milosevic oversaw the "ethnic cleansing" of Muslims and is responsible for 230,000 deaths and over 3 million displacements. Bosnian Serb forces drove Muslims from their homes, subjecting them to mass rape, confinement in concentration camps and genocide. The country was falling apart and NATO had to intervene to stop the war. In the aftermath chilling facts came to light about Milosevic's unashamedly evil policies and he is currently still being tried as a War Criminal.
An eventual pal of Hitler's Mussolini was another fan of Fascism, but he was a full-fledged Fascist dictator back while Adolf was still a talentless, failing painter. He was dictator of Italy from 1922 to 1945. He was determined to increase his empire, again like Hitler, gazing longingly at the British Empire and wanting one of his own. He invaded Ethiopia, tanks and machine guns killing men armed with spears. Apparently they built roads for their tanks as they went, invading slowly and massacring the natives. This war prompted the Ethiopian Emperor, Haile Selassie, to appeal to the UN for help but everyone ignored him. Mussolini went on to form an alliance with Hitler and was swept away when the war ended. He caused the deaths of at least 400,000 Italians and 30,000 Ethiopians.
Leader of the Ba´ath party and President of Iraq since 1979 Saddam has been villified by the west for years. In 1987 Saddam launched the Anfal campaign against the Kurds, in which some 180,000 "disappeared." 4,000 villages were razed and large areas of eastern Kurdistan were depopulated. He also used chemical weapons on Iran during the Iran-Iraq war and had dissenters of his regime executed. It is estimated over 500,000 Iranians died in the conflict. Eventually invading Kuwait he attracted the attention of an even bigger bully than himself Iraq was beaten in the first Gulf War but Saddam remained in power for a further 12 years of sanctions and regime brutality, leading to thousands of Iraqi deaths. A second US led war has belatedly removed him and he was recently found hiding in a hole in the ground. He was tried and executed in December 2006.
Prime Minister of Britain from 1979 to 1990 and leader of the Conservative Party. Thatcher was responsible for a range of evil. She destroyed the Trade Union movement, introducing worse conditions and pay for workers to make Britain more 'economically competitive'. She led the country on a farcical war for the Falklands Isles. She stopped free school milk in primary schools. She tried to tax individuals not wealth (with Poll Tax). She privatised everything she could get her hands on, destroyed the UK's relationship with Europe and gave the US the impression that Britain will always bend over backwards for them.
Sharon climbed his way through the Israeli army building a strong reputation for ruthlessness, he was involved in several massacres of Palestinians. Since being elected Prime Minister in 2001 he has continued this policy which amounts to theft of land and "ethnic cleansing". He has been accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity. He continues to enjoy the support of the US government despite breaking more UN resolutions than Saddam Hussein.
Augusto Pinochet was responsible for around 3,000 deaths. He was installed as President of Chile by the US to eliminate the perceived left-wing threat. The CIA destabilised the country and Pinochet and his right-wing military cronies seized power and ran Chile into the ground while lining their own pockets. About 600 military officers were named as having committed human rights abuses during the Pinochet regime. Despite his obvious crimes Pinochet remains a free man declared "unfit for trial" and has been supported by the US and Britain, most notably by Thatcher.
Harry S Truman has to appear here because of the horrific atomic bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima in Japan. This initially caused the death of 110,000 people with 100,000 more dying later from the effects. These weren´t military people, these were civilian cities full of innocent men, women and children and no argument can justify this despicable act of terror.
Truman was a military man who rose through the ranks to become President. He took over the war effort from Roosevelt and despite the approach of victory, he decided to use the most awful weapon mankind had yet devised. He claimed it was necessary to end the war, some claim it was to prevent the Russians invading, but nothing can really vindicate such an evil act.
Nicolae Ceausescu was the Communist Leader of Romania from 1965 until 1989, when he was overthrown. Ceausescu tried to pay off the large foreign debt that his government had accumulated in the 1970´s by exporting much of the country´s agricultural and industrial production. The resulting drastic shortages of food, energy, medicines, and other basic necessities drove Romania to near starvation.
He then decreed that all women should have five children, naturally they couldn´t cope, and thousands of children ended up in state-run orphanages where many of them died from malnutrition and disease. Ceausescu also forbade testing of the nation´s blood supply for AIDS. Many of the orphans contracted the incurable virus and Romania eventually accounted for over half of all childhood AIDS cases in Europe.
Ceausescu also instituted an extensive personality cult and was well known for nepotism. He appointed his wife, Elena, and some members of his family to high posts in the government. Over one fifth of the built up area of central Bucharest, including churches and historic buildings, was demolished during Ceausescu´s rule in the 1980s.
Ceausescu´s regime collapsed after he ordered armed security forces to fire on anti-government demonstrators in the city of Timisoara in December 1989. The revolution spread to Bucharest, and the army soon defected to the demonstrators. On Christmas day the couple were hurriedly tried and convicted by a military tribunal on charges of mass murder. Ceausescu and his wife were then shot by a firing squad at Targoviste.
Fulgencio Batista was first elected to power in 1933 and ran Cuba until 1944. Batista was forbidden by law to seek re-election so in 1952 he staged a military coup overthrowing Carlos Prio Socarras (elected in 1948). This time he headed a notoriously corrupt and repressive government who rejected the constitution. He was on good terms with the United States government and the mafia. American corporations did very well in Cuba with Batista in charge and the island became a major tourist destination. However the native Cubans became increasingly irritated with the flow of profits to the US. In May 1958, Batista launched a major assault against Castro and the other rebel groups. Castro won and in 1959 Batista fled the country to the Dominican Republic.
Jean-Bedel Bokassa took power of Central Africa in a coup supported by France in 1965. The ambitious and possibly mad Bokassa crowned himself Emperor of the Central African Empire in 1977, a ceremony which cost at least $20 million. Most notably he was involved in the massacre of school children. He was arrested and charged with torture, murder, and cannibalism. Convicted of murdering several political opponents, Bokassa was sentenced to death, but that was later commuted to life in prison. He was later released in a general amnesty and died of a heart attack in 1996 aged 75.
Ferdinand Marcos was elected president of the Philippines in 1965. He declared martial law in 1972 and ruled virtually as a dictator until 1986. He was especially talented at stealing money from state coffers. Conservative estimates put the total sum stolen at $5 billion - a combined system of diverting foreign aid, kickbacks and patronage which allowed Marcos and his wife Imelda to live in luxury. Rule was by executive decree, laws passed by a rubber stamp parliament. In 1986 an army rebellion, which turned into the EDSA (people power) uprising under Corazon Aquino, forced him to flee the country. He died in exile in Hawaii in 1989.
Suharto seized power in Indonesia in 1965. The CIA-backed coup claimed the lives of 500,000 Indonesians. Suharto began with lots of promises about political reconstruction, economic reform and greater government transparency but quickly degenerated into nepotism, cronyism and wild spending. He was also responsible for 200,000 East Timorese deaths in 1975 and currently lives in happy retirement in Indonesia.
Hideki Tojo was the military leader of Japan from 1941 to 1944. In his role as General and then Minister of War he oversaw the slaughter of more than 30 million Chinese people during the 1930´s earning him the nickname "The Razor". As Prime Minister he supported Nazi Germany and ordered the attack on Pearl Harbour. He was tried before the War Crimes Tribunals for his role in the 1939-45 War and executed in 1948.