15 October, 2008

History has known many bastards

There is an interesting piece on the BBC News website by Simon Sebag Montefiore. He has some kind of historian fellow who has written a book about very bad people who have over the years troubled the world. In the article, he draws attention to some less known human monsters, thereby breaking away from the old reliables of Mao, Hitler, and Stalin. Some of the people he writes about seem a bit second division, but it's nice to see King Leopold getting the recognition he deserves. I was struck, though, by the only living person on Montefiore's list - Ethiopia's mini-Stalin, Mengistu Haile-Mariam, leader of the maniacal communist regime that ruled the country from the mid-1970s to the early 1990s. Mengistu's regime was one of brutal internal repression against real or imagined enemies and uncompromising war against regional insurrectionists and the country's Somalian neighbours; his use of famine as a weapon of war pushed the death-toll into the hundreds of thousands.

Mengistu is currently resident in Zimbabwe.

And you can read the article here.


kvlol said...

His first Stalin book (Court of the Red Tsar) was very good. I didn't try the second as I am less interested in the very early years...

Ian said...

I liked him before he went all commercial - he was still cool then.