The dictator Napoleon in the novel Animal Farm by George Orwell resembles the current Sudanese Dictator Omar al-Bashir. Napoleon is a pig on Animal Farm who, from the time Mr. Jones was kicked out of the farm, assumed power and took as much control as he could over the farm. Omar al-Bashir has been president of Sudan from 1989 to present day. He is considered one of the most corrupt leaders of all time with seven counts of crimes against humanity and war crimes and is currently the only sitting president with outstanding arrest warrant from the International Criminal Court (ICC) (Watch).
However, even with these counts, al-Bashir still leads Sudan as a dictator. Napoleon and al-Bashir are the similar in the ways they came to and keep their power, how they instill fear on their citizens and how they use propaganda to help resist opposition. Al-Bashir grew up in very modest circumstances into a farming family. He eventually joined the army and made his way up to the Revolutionary Command Council (Tribune). Although not stated in Animal Farm, Napoleon most likely grew up in relatively modest circumstances considering his character was influenced by Joseph Stalin.
Both dictators forcefully came to power after a revolt from their land. After the animals rose up and kicked out Mr. Jones, Napoleon and Snowball were the two clear animals that would be great at leading their farm. Seeing that Snowball would most likely be elected, Napoleon decided to have his guard dogs drive out Snowball. The animals were then feared into have Napoleon as their leader; the animals never voted to have Napoleon as their leader. Al-Bashir came to power by a coup in 1989 during the time when Sudan was in a massive, 21-year, civil war between the north and south.
Since he first came to power, he has had two more elections, one in 2010 and another in 2015. In both elections he won by majority vote. In 2015, only 46% of citizens voted and 94% of them voted for al-Bashir (NY Times). The elections that al-Bashir has had shows how he instills fear into his citizens just like Napoleon does. Al-bashir has been criticized (how he makes ppl vote for him). Napoleon uses Bluebell and Jessie’s puppies to instill fear into the animals. He uses the puppies as secret police, making the dogs kill whenever an animal protested his reign. ade the dogs kill four pigs after they protested his reign. He continuously does this through the book.
In al-Bashir’s reign, he instilled fear into his own citizens by using his militia, the Janjaweed (Watch). The most infamous war crime of al-Bashir is genocide. He is known with killing members of the Fur, Masalit, and Zaghawa ethnic groups in the Darfur region of Sudan (BBC & Tribune). The genocide has lead to over two-million deaths and four-million displaced people (Watch). Similarly to Napoleon with animals he kills, al-Bashir kills these ethnic groups for little reason.
He gives other random reasons of kill such as possessing US dollars (BBC). Al-Bashir has continually made lies such as saying that government funds and oil money were reasons for unrest in Darfur (BBC). abuses his power Al-bashir continuously changes facts to show himself in a better light. After signing a peace treaty with the Sudan’s People’s Liberation Party, an opposition group, al-Bashir claimed that he signed the treaty due to Sudan’s victories, not because Sudan was in a bad position, which clearly was not the case (BBC).
Currently, al-Bashir has an international travel ban issued by the ICC, yet has travelled abroad to many other countries including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and China; he considers himself above the law (Watch & Tribune). Al-Bashir married second woman, a war-widow, to be an example to others and to show that he cares about his soldiers. Both al-Bashir and Napoleon both like to be called by other names that make them sound more in power.
Al-bashir likes to be called Your Excellency and Napoleon likes to be called “Father of All Animals, Terror of Mankind, Protector of the Sheepfold, Duckling’s Friend, and the like” (Orwell 100). Napoleon even has his own poem that praises his rule and compares him to “the sun in the sky”, and says that he “watches over all” (Orwell 101). Similarly, al-Bashir calls his regime the ‘Salvation’ regime. These propaganda tactics are used to put both Napoleon and al-Bashir in a better position, so that people do not question their leadership.
Both al-Bashir and Napoleon have had opposition to their rule. Napoleon is still in charge of Animal Farm by the end of Animal Farm and Omar al-Bashir is still the dictator of Sudan today. In 2011, Sudan was split into the two countries, Sudan and South Sudan, with a 99% vote in favor of the split due to growing opposition of al-Bashir’s rule (BBC). Although the Darfur Genocide is still technically occurring today, many of its misfortune has been forgotten, just like Napoleon’s rule had been at the end of Animal Farm.