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Mao Zedong Chairman of the Communist Party of China

Mao Zedong became leader of the People's Republic of China when it was founded in 1949. he was responsible for one of the most disastrous policies in world history, the "Great Leap Forward." Basically, it entailed pulling all of his people off of farming to have them try to mill steel in their backyards instead. (Note: You cannot make steel in your back yard.) Millions starved.In the wake of that disaster, Mao's power was considerably shaken, so much so that two of his underlings, Liu Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping, were able to wrest power from him. This, of course, infuriated Mao, who promptly began another disastrous campaign: the Cultural Revolution, which literally was a war against smart people. Under the pretext that bourgeois elements were permeating a classless society, Mao banished his political opponents, such as Liu and Deng, to the countryside. Soon, however, Mao's definition of political opponents stretched to encompass "anyone who is smart." Universities were closed down, and professors and students were sent to the countryside to be "re-educated" through labor. The word "intellectual" became an insult. The only genius was declared to be Mao himself (people were taught to repeat the phrase, "Chairman Mao is a genius, everything the Chairman says is greatly true; one of the Chairman's words will override the meaning of ten thousand of ours.")And then there was Lei Feng. He was a completely unremarkable soldier who died in an unremarkable fashion after getting hit by a telephone pole. But Mao arbitrarily decided to declare him the nation's greatest hero. Various staged photos supposedly depicted him doing good deeds, and stories of his heroics were inserted into textbooks in every school. A diary belonging to him was "found," and it contained nothing but flowery praises for Mao.Then Mao recruited high school students to his cause, calling them the Red Guards. Mao tasked these teenagers with correcting the bourgeois elements in society and effectively gave them a legal blank check to do it by whatever means they chose. This went exactly how you'd expect they started ransacking people's houses and beating them if they were found to own anything even remotely Western, such as ties. As he got older, Mao started worrying about his own mortality and subscribing to the Taoist belief that having sex with virgins lengthens one's lifespan. Young girls were brought from all over the country to help him on this monumental task. Mao often had fivesomes or sixsomes and watched nude underwater ballet shows.He still died in 1976.
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Enver Hoxha Leader of Albania

Enver Hoxha became prime minister of Albania in 1944, but Hoxha wasn't satisfied with just that insignificant post. So he took all the Cabinet jobs for himself, calling himself "Comrade-Chairman-Prime Minister-Foreign-Minister-Minister of War-Commander-in-Chief of the People's Army Enver Hoxha."Hoxha forbade the ownership of color televisions and typewriters all the way until the 1980s, because they were a distraction from the true Albanian way of life, which was, of course, communism. The color television part wasn't that bad they became prevalent only in the 60s but godammit, the typewriter was invented in 1870 and Then, he banned beards no one was aloud to have beards our be exicuted.Like a lot of dictators, Hoxha would use doubles, as he feared assassination. But far be it from him to simply ask for volunteers. Hoxha kidnapped a dentist in rural Albania who looked sort of like him, then forced plastic surgery on him to make the resemblance even more uncanny. The poor guy had no choice in the matter; he had to leave his life behind and live on pretending to be the prime minister in hopes he would get shot.More than he was afraid of assassination, Hoxha feared a Soviet invasion. Lots of people feared that back in those days, but Hoxha dealt with the threat in his own uniquely crazy way: He built 750,000 random bunkers all over the country. On one hand, Albania was a country of only 3 million, so this seems like overkill. But then you realize each bunker was only big enough to hold one person.Hoxha stayed in power until the day he died.
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Francisco Macias Nguema President of Equatorial Guinea

The son of a witch doctor, Nguema started with the humble position of mayor before becoming president of Equatorial Guinea in 1968. He banned the word "intellectual," shut down private schools and drove educated people out of his country because he had some sort of vendetta against book learning. Then he shut down several hospitals in favor of his witch doctor ancestry and, well, you can guess how that went. He even banned the use of lubricants in a power plant, saying that he could keep the place running with his magic powers. Unsurprisingly, the plant broke down, and the entire capital was engulfed in darkness.He frequently indulged in bhang, a drink made from marijuana, and often dined with imaginary friends and executed imaginary enemies.In 1971, Nguema declared himself the Grandmaster of Education, Science and Culture and changed the national motto to "There is no other God than Macias Nguema." To top it all off, Nguema killed the governor of the public bank and hid all the money in his jungle shed. Eventually Nguema's own nephew ousted him in a long-overdue coup. He was executed by firing squad in 1979, because evidently his magical powers did not extend to the stopping of bullets.
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Cixi

Yehenara (later Cixi) was one of Chinese Emperor Xianfeng’s many concubines who rose to power after she gave him a son. Upon Xianfeng’s death, she became the co-regent with her young son and new Emperor Tongzhi. Cixi is often presented as a tyrant who poisoned her rivals and a sexually deviant person. New studies, however, reveal that many of the crimes Cixi supposedly committed were the fabrication of British Sinologist Edmund Backhouse who among other things also claimed to have had sexual relations with the dowager when she was 65 years old.
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Francois Duvalier

The Haitian dictator, also known as Papa Doc governed the poorest country in the Americas from 1957 to his death in 1971. During his reign of terror, about 30,000 Haitians are estimated to have been assassinated, while thousands – mostly intelligence fled the country. Many people consider him responsible for the current situation in Haiti. He was succeeded by his son Jean-Claude Duvalier who continued the reign of terror until 1986 when he went into a self-imposed exile.
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Than Shwe

Than Shwe was the leader of the ruling military junta in Myanmar (Burma) and had been criticized and sanctioned by Western countries for human-rights abuses.
Up to 1 million people were reportedly sent to "satellite zones" and "labor camps" under his rule.There was virtually no free speech in the country, and "owning a computer modern or fax [was] illegal, and anyone talking to a foreign journalist [was] at risk of torture or jail," the Guardian reported in 2007.Although Shwe stepped down in 2011, The Wall Street Journal reports that he "still exerts considerable leverage behind the scenes."Most recently, he pledged support to his former foe, Aung San Suu Kyi, as the Myanmar's "future leader" — even though during his rule, the country's Nobel Prize-winning opposition leader was kept under house arrest.
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Saddam Hussein the 5th President of Iraq

Saddam Hussein was a well-known leader that instigated numerous conflicts in his lifetime. He instituted mass genocide against the Kurds, Shabaks, Assyrians, Mandeans and other ethnic groups who rebelled against his leadership and fought several wars against Iran and Kuwait, with the death toll climbing to about 2 million in total.
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Caracalla Emperor of Rome

Caracalla was ruler of Rome from 198 to 217 AD, and this guy was a big fan of slaughter. Ordering murder and violence was just about his only trick, and the only people who didn’t hate him were the soldiers, thanks to the lavish wages he gave them. Cities that displeased him like Alexandria, suddenly found themselves with a much smaller population after he came to visit, as all the people that came to greet him were killed. Some 20,000 were slaughtered in days of looting and violence. He taxed the citizens hugely, and forced the ruling class to create immense structures with their own money for his enjoyment. He even tricked an enemy nation into thinking he had accepted a treaty and marriage proposal from them, and then slaughtered the girl and all the guests.
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Robert Mugabe

President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe is said to have risen to power via electoral deception and fearmongering. There was even one election where he did not receive any votes in a certain province so he orchestrated the killing of over 20,000 civilians by fabricating stories of rebellion and treason. During his time in office over 3.1 million Zimbabweans lost their homes, jobs, and livelihood due to his “land reform program” aka bulldozing any village that voices dissent.
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Joseph Stalin

Stalin was the Premier and dictator of the Soviet Union from 1941 to 1953. He started as a Bolshevik revolutionary in 1917, and exercised great political power after that. In 1928, he launched his Five Year Plan, an aggressive industrial and agricultural program which left hundreds of thousands of peasants starving or dead.

He got rid of all of his political opposition through a Great Purge (or “Great Terror” depending who you talk to), aimed at his rivals through trials and secret executions. In Ukraine there is a dark period known as Holodomor, where his policies caused a famine and killed between 2.5 to 10 million people – citizens that he simply let die in order to depopulate the country. Stalin killed more of his own people than possibly anyone else in history (except maybe Mao Zedong). Through massacres, famine, Gulag camps, executions, policies, and military campaigns, it is estimated that Stalin is responsible for the deaths of between 15 to 30 million people.
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