World’s Worst Leaders of the 21st Century   

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The new millennium has dished up awesome innovations that include drones, artificial intelligence, big data, digital devices and Bitcoin online casino sites.  Humankind is clearly advancing at a rapid rate on so many levels.  There is however one hangover from the past that we can’t seem to shake… our unerring ability to elect really bad leaders.

Notwithstanding what continent you hail from, there are statesmen, presidents and supreme leaders who have taken functioning democracies and turned them into personal fiefdoms.  State sanctioned purges and assassinations coupled with corruption, financial mismanagement and bloody internecine warfare are the order of the day.

Constitutions are amended or scrapped altogether, pledges are broken and promises revoked on the flimsiest of grounds.  These modern day despots are of the same ilk as Stalin, Hitler, Pot and Amin.  Clearly history hasn’t taught us anything at all.

Although the list of bad leaders is long, we’ve cherry picked a few standout characters who are wicked, manipulative and up to no good.  Here’s our selection of the worst world leaders of the 21st Century, men who will be remembered as thugs one and all:

Nicolas Maduro – Venezuela

Nicolas Maduro currently presides over Venezuela, a shattered country that was once the wealthiest nation in South America.  Today Venezuela has the highest homicide rate in the world and is defined by daily street protests that have become increasingly violent.  In a few short years the former bus driver has transformed a nascent democracy into a failed totalitarian state.

His attempts at crushing civil dissent have led to charges of human rights abuses and crimes against humanity been levelled against him.  Despite his heavy handed political tactics and serious financial mismanagement that has led to critical shortages of medicine and basic foodstuffs, Maduro has retained the country’s hot seat with the support of the military and by ruling by decree.

Robert Mugabe – Zimbabwe

Once hailed as a revolutionary hero who dismantled the imperialist regime of Rhodesia and replaced it with the democratic state of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe will be remembered as a corrupt and tainted African dictator.  He ruled the country with a rod of iron for 37 years and was finally dislodged through a soft coup d’état in 2017.

When Mugabe stepped into the breach in 1980, Zimbabwe had a flourishing local economy and was known as the bread basket of Africa.  His tenure was defined by violent land grabs, mass killings and corruption on a massive scale.  At the end of his ‘reign’ Zimbabwe’s economy was on the brink of collapse and the once thriving nation was officially classified as a failed state.

Kim Jong-Un – North Korea

Kim Jong-Un is the Supreme Leader of North Korea and the third generation of a family dynasty to rule the Far Eastern nation.  Although only 34 years of age, Kim is a violent, ruthless man who shored up his support by purging dissenters from the ranks.  The young dictator first reached notoriety when he ordered the execution of his uncle Jang Song Thaek and insisted the entire Jang clan be wiped off the face of the earth… men, women and children.

Kim was more recently implicated in the death of his half brother at an airport in Malaysia.  According to eye witness accounts, thousands of dissenters have been killed, imprisoned or re-educated at camps known for their brutality.  There’s growing discontent for the short tubby leader who is largely responsible for the country’s marked economic decline.  Kim has also been linked to human rights violations and crimes against humanity.

Find out who has the real power in North Korea:

Bashar Al-Assad – Syria

Bashar Al-Assad is the incumbent president of Syria and the man who crushed the Arab Spring, triggering a protracted civil war.  The former doctor has been linked to high-profile political killings and countless arrests.  To date more than 500 000 deaths have occurred under his watch, many of whom were child victims.

One of the most damning indictments of the man relates to the Syrian Army’s use of deadly sarin nerve gas in an attack on a rebel-held town.  More than 100 innocent people died a horrific death as a result.  Assad appears on a list of leaders implicated in war crimes and submitted to the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

Jacob Zuma – South Africa

Like his predecessor, Jacob Zuma had his work cut out for him as he followed in the footsteps of a giant; the revered statesmen and first democratically elected president of South Africa, the late great Nelson Mandela. Quite how the Rainbow Nation went from the non-racial dream of Mandela to the corrupt disaster of Zuma is anyone’s guess.  What we do know is that Zuma is the worst of what South Africa has to offer.  He kicked off his tenure as president with a rape trial and more than 750 cases of fraud and corruption hanging over his head.

Despite all the obvious pitfalls of the tainted presidency, Zuma managed to bribe charm and lie his way to the top… and promptly handed over the keys to the treasury to an immigrant family from India.  Although the fatally flawed polygamist from Nkandla was forced to resign in 2018, he has left the country in tatters.  The economy has been downgraded to sub investment levels, the unemployment rate is the highest it’s ever been and billions of rands in public funds have literally disappeared.

See also, US president Donald Trump and his magic hair:

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