Europe

Scottish independence: Dictator threatened Queen to ‘end British oppression’ in letter

Indyref2: Sturgeon warned Scotland would 'suffer' by Miklinski

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has resumed calls for a second referendum for Scottish Independence in recent months. With a No-Deal Brexit looming, the leader raised her concerns about the nation’s stance within the European Union. In a previous demand to breakaway from Britain, the dictator Idi Amin sent a threatening letter to Her Majesty to demand for freedom.

Amin served as the President of Uganda for eight years from 1971, when he quickly became known as the “Butcher” for his deplorably brutal tactics.  

Before his rise to power, he was a trainee cook in the King’s African Rifles battalion and later enlisted as a private in 1946.

He grew fond of Scotland during his time in the army after being taught to play the bagpipes by the military’s pop major. 

Chris Mikul, author of My Favourite Dictators, claimed that Amin was “often seen wearing a kilt and tartan forage cap” after that point.

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His notorious rise to power happened after Uganda gained independence from Britain in 1962. 

Amin took over as President nine years later and was described as “the biggest buffoon on the world stage”.

He gained a reputation for barbaric torture methods and brutality, which led to the deaths of between 300,000 and 500,000 people during his reign.

Before he rose to power, a British officer was reported to have described the 6ft 4in recruit as “virtually bone from the neck up”.

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He claimed that Amin needed “things explained in words of one letter” due to his “poor education” and lack of English. 

Despite this, Mr Mikul claimed that the King’s African Rifles “loved him” because he was “strong as an ox”, “fiercely loyal to his superiors” and “funny”.

Years later, Amin “lunched with Prime Minister Edward Heath” and also “dined with the Queen at Buckingham Palace” according to Mr Mikul.

During his trip to the UK, Mr Mikul claimed that Amin also “visited his beloved Scotland” and felt connected to the nation. 

After Amin became President in 1971, he sent a number of surprising messages to world leaders including the Tanzanian President Julius Nyerere. 

He wrote: “I love you very much and if you were a woman I would even consider marrying you, although you have grey hairs on your head.”

Not only that, he sent a fiery message to The Queen about Scottish Independence, where he boasted: “Many of the Scottish people already consider me ‘King of the Scots’. 

“I am the first man to ask the British government to end their oppression of Scotland. If the Scots want me to be their King, I will.” 

In another surprising move, he announced the “formation of a Save Britain Fund”.

Mr Mikul recounted: “At one point, he sent a cable to Prime Minister Health urging him to send a pane to pick up some wheat and vegetables collected by farms ‘before it goes bad.’”

In 1978, Amin’s troops mutinied and fighting broke out along the Ugandan-Tanzanian border. 

Later he was forced to flee into exile, where he lived between Libya and Saudi Arabia until his death related to kidney failure in 2003.

Chris Mikul’s book My Favourite Dictators was published by HeadPress in 2019 and is available here. 

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