Adolf Hitler (20 April 1889 – 30 April 1945) was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party (Nazi) (Holocaust)
A decorated veteran of World War I, Hitler joined the Nazi Party in 1920 and became its leader in 1921. Following his imprisonment after a failed coup in 1923, he gained support by promoting nationalism, antisemitism and anti-communism with charismatic oratory and propaganda. He was appointed chancellor in 1933, and quickly established a totalitarian and fascist dictatorship. Hitler pursued a foreign policy with the declared goal of seizing Lebensraum ("living space") for Germany, directing the resources of the state toward this goal. His rebuilt Wehrmacht invaded Poland in 1939, leading to the outbreak of World War II in Europe.
Within three years, Germany and the Axis powers occupied most of Europe and large parts of Africa, East and Southeast Asia and the Pacific Ocean. However, the Allies gained the upper hand from 1942 onward and in 1945 Allied armies invaded Germany from all sides. His forces committed numerous atrocities during the war, including the systematic killing of as many as 17 million civilians including the genocide of an estimated six million Jews, a crime known as the Holocaust.
Joseph Stalin (born 18 December 1878 – 5 March 1953) was the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union's Central Committee from 1922 until his death in 1953. In the years following Lenin's death in 1924, he rose to become the authoritarian leader of the Soviet Union.
Stalin launched a command economy, replacing the New Economic Policy of the 1920s with Five-Year Plans and launching a period of rapid industrialization and economic collectivization. The upheaval in the agricultural sector disrupted food production, resulting in widespread famine, such as the Soviet famine of 1932-1933, known in Ukraine as the Holodomor. (The Great purge)
Ivan IV, the Terrible (1530-1584) Ivan was intelligent, devout, and impulsive; given to rages, and according to the suspicions of some, probably had episodic outbreaks of mental illness. One notable outburst resulted in the death of his groomed and chosen heir – Ivan Ivanovich – resulting in the passing of the Tsardom to a less than ideal younger son – the mentally retarded Feodor I of Russia. His long reign saw the conquest of the Khanates of Kazan, Astrakhan, and Siberia, transforming Russia into a multiethnic and multiconfessional state spanning almost 1 billion acres, growing during his term at a rate of approximately 50 square miles a day.
Saloth Sar (May 19, 1928– April 15, 1998), widely known as Pol Pot, was the leader of the Cambodian communist movement known as the Khmer Rouge and was Prime Minister of Democratic Kampuchea from 1976–1979.
Pol Pot became the de facto leader of Cambodia in mid-1975. During his time in power, Pol Pot imposed a version of agrarian collectivization, forcing city dwellers to relocate to the countryside to work in collective farms and forced labour projects, toward a goal of "restarting civilization" in "Year Zero". The combined effects of slave labour, malnutrition, poor medical care, and executions resulted in the deaths of an estimated 750,000 to 1.7 million people, approximately 26% of the Cambodian population.
Idi Amin Dada (c.1925– 16 August 2003), commonly known as Idi Amin, was a Ugandan military dictator and the president of Uganda from 1971 to 1979. Amin joined the British colonial regiment, the King's African Rifles, in 1946, and advanced to the rank of Major General and Commander of the Ugandan Army. He took power in a military coup in January 1971, deposing Milton Obote. His rule was characterized by human rights abuses, political repression, ethnic persecution, extrajudicial killings and the expulsion of Asians from Uganda. The number of people killed as a result of his regime is unknown; estimates from human rights groups range from 100,000 to 500,000.
Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin (January 22 or January 10 1869 – December 29 or December 16 1916) was a Russian mystic who is perceived as having influenced the later days of the Russian Tsar Nicholas II, his wife the Tsaritsa Alexandra, and their only son the Tsarevich Alexei. Rasputin had often been called the "Mad Monk", while others considered him a "strannik" (or religious pilgrim) and even a starets (ста́рец, "elder", a title usually reserved for monk-confessors), believing him to be a psychic and faith healer.
Josip Broz Tito (1892-1980) Prime Minister of Yugoslavia, 1945-1953
President of Yugoslavia, 1953-1980
Considering the fate of Yugoslavia since 1991, the life of Marshal Tito assumes special significance. In retrospect, his tyrannical rule seems benign. The hatreds between Slovenes, Serbs, Croats, Bosnian Moslems, Albanians, and Macedonians are utterly incomprehensible to anyone unfamiliar with the historic circumstances that gave birth to that new term, "ethnic cleansing."
Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia, more commonly known as Vlad the Impaler (Vlad Ţepeş in Romanian), also known as Vlad Dracula, or simply Dracula (1431 – December 1476), His three reigns were in 1448, 1456–1462, and 1476. Vlad the Impaler is known for the exceedingly cruel punishments he imposed during his reign. Impalement was Ţepeş's preferred method of torture and execution.
Countess Elizabeth Báthory (7 August 1560 – 21 August 1614) was a Hungarian countess from the renowned Báthory family. She is possibly the most prolific female serial killer in history and is remembered as the "Blood Countess" and as the "Bloody Lady of Čachtice", after the castle near Trencsén (Trenčín), in the Kingdom of Hungary, where she spent most of her adult life.
After her husband's death, she and four collaborators were accused of torturing and killing hundreds of girls and young women, with one witness attributing to them over 600 victims, though she was only convicted on 80 counts. In 1610, she was imprisoned in Čachtice Castle, where she remained bricked in a set of rooms until her death four years later. She was never formally tried in court.
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