DIPLOMATS AS THE CANNIBAL’S LITTER BEARERS
ARMAN NAVASARDYAN
Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary






There is a widespread opinion that diplomats, despite being decent and, to a certain extent, proud, and cool-headed people, betray their own principles when serving their country’s interests. That’s a good trait. However what I will tell now seems to break the norms of morality and casts a shadow on diplomatic dignity and authority. I wish to write here about one of the most bloodthirsty dictators of the last century: President Idi Amin of Uganda.

Amin was an unrivaled master of terror whose actions caused half a million deaths, of which two thousand people were killed by his own hand. His special units tortured and murdered many of the commanding officers of the Ugandan army. Brigadier Suleiman Hussein, the army chief of staff, was captured in Kampala, taken to prison, beaten in front of correctional officers, and his head was cut off and taken to Idi Amin, who is believed to have kept it in a fridge for a night. The number of the dead kept growing; bodies were often dumped into the Nile River, free food for the crocodiles. There were so many bodies in the river that they often blocked the hydroelectric intake channels at Jinaja’s Owen Falls Dam.

Amin was especially brutal with the Christians. He personally shot and killed the Archbishop of the Metropolitan Province of Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi Janani Luwum. And a month later he shamelessly declared at the First Afro-Arab Summit in Cairo (March 1977): "There are no prisons in Uganda. Our people live in peaceful and safe conditions. Uganda is a free country, and its people prosper.”
The language of all dictators is the same . . .

The list of Amin’s "heroic deeds” is endless. In June 1976, Amin allowed an Air France airliner hijacked by two members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine to land at Entebbe Airport. The hijackers held the passengers hostage, many of whom were Jews and citizens of Israel. In the subsequent Israeli rescue operation, codenamed Operation Entebbe (organized by the Institute for Intelligence and Special Operations, otherwise known as the Mossad), a group of Israeli commandos seized control of Entebbe Airport, freeing nearly all the hostages. About three dozen Ugandan soldiers and several of the hijackers were killed during the operation. Nearly all of the Ugandan Army Air Force MiG-17 fighter planes were destroyed on the ground at Entebbe Airport. This was one of the most brilliant operations against terrorism in history.
As all dictators, Amin was doomed to a shameful end. He declared a state of war against Tanzania, forgetting that thousands of Ugandan exiles and refugees would join the enemy. He lost the war. He was forced to flee into exile and settled in Saudi Arabia where he died from kidney failure.

Idi Amin was one of the most degenerate and repulsive men of twentieth century. He had serious psychological problems and sexual perversions. He was officially married seven times and had over thirty mistresses. He is believed to have fathered up to sixty children. They found human organs in the fridge of his "botanical garden” after he had fled from Uganda. There was a widespread belief that Idi Amin was a cannibal.


And this paranoiac man did such erratic things during his presidency that one doesn’t know whether to laugh or to cry. He liked to be carried in a litter as a pharaoh or emperor during celebrations. And he ordered that his litter bearers be . . . members of foreign envoys.

I can’t say for sure which envoys had been put to such a disgraceful task, but it’s a fact that some diplomats have agreed to do it. Perhaps they were guided by the sacred mission of improving the relations between their countries, or they were simply frightened that they would turn up in the cannibal’s fridge. According to rumors, the litter bearers even joked that it was a hefty task to carry Idi Amin. He weighed over 120 kilograms.
DIPLOMATIC ESSAYS
1272 reads | 28.07.2013
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