• • •
Defender of the Faith,
Believed the biggest problem in his life
Was whoever happened to be his wife.
To whom much of European jurisprudence
But I’m with Beethoven.
A former führer
Who failed a bit at painting pics
And then – big time – at politics.
Stalin, aka Uncle Joe,
Is still admired in Russia, even though
In historians’ opinion
He murdered more or less nine million.
Il Duce of Italy,
Was fond of being fascist for effect.
Perhaps too much, in retrospect.
Is still revered in China now,
Not so much for all the lives he took
But rather for his little little-read red book.
El dictador de Chile,
Turned Chile into hell.
May Hell be chilly for him now as well.
At giving very very very very very
very very very very long speeches
While Cuba fell to pieces.
Was criticised quite a lot
For deviating from orthodox Marxism-Leninism.
(He killed about two million.)
Was lionised by leaders in the West
Who admired his opposition
to the invasion of Czechoslovakia.
It didn’t make Romanians any happier.
An Iranian theocrat known mainly
For looking sour, overthrowing the Shah
And having a thing about fatwa.
Loved any political party
As long as the party celebree
Had an awfully bad name
For human rights abuses, genocide, corruption
And for his missing weapons of mass destruction.
Thought himself savvy,
But read his Green Book
And you’ll think him mistook.
Was keen to be seen
As Uganda’s Great Dictator. A fruitcake
Who became a fruitarian later.
An ethnic-cleansing fan
With a propensity for epic poetry
One-time No. 1 Nigerian,
Could hardly believe
his nominally determinative luck:
President! and unassailably corrupt!
Osama bin Laden
Never lived in Arden
Where he might have found the everyday life
of country folk more fulfilling
Than everyday killing.
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi,
The Caliphate’s Big Daddy,
Believed that doing wrong is right,
The little shite.
Abubakar Shakau of Boko Haram
Dedicated his life to causing harm.
After many false reports that he had died,
Good news! He did.
Was not in good humour
When charged with
It was all a misconstruction!
Very powerful he
And much loved by every Chinese who
Know much loving, that the safest thing to do.
Really shouldn’t look so sad:
Although so many Syrians are dead
or have fled to the exterior
He’s still the President of Syria!
A rotund wrong’un,
Who’s ruled with iron rod
Ever since his Korea adviser said,
Why not have a go at being God?
Mohammed bin Salman,
Ruler of the Saud Clan,
Has relaxed the code for women’s dress,
But torture, jailing and murder
remain his major interest.
And self-styled anti-democratic he-man hero.
A genocidal zero.
Got the hump,
Being the quondam megalomaga win-win
Is always a shoo-in
Whenever, as Russia’s democratically elected
He’s on the ballot paper.
Acts the hard man, though
It doesn’t really cut it:
He’s Putin’s puppet.
Has a tried and tested modus operandi:
1: stir up hatred of minority.
2: maintain your majority!
Hungary’s main man:
Once a democrat, now –
Enough of that! –
Victors in Afghanistan,
Like repressing girls and women.
High time women did the winning!
Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia
Had seemed a herald of utopia
Until his Ethiopian epiphany went amiss.
It’s now an Abyssinian abyss.
A fighter against tyranny.
Now a tyrant, ironically.
Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson,
Would-be World King at Eton,
Reluctantly had to restrict his ambition
To fucking up Britain.
Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper,
et in saecula saeculorum. Ah, men.