Monday, October 09, 2006

The answer

Well, guesses and informed choices have been flooding in all weekend. Here, to save bandwidth, is the solution:

(a) Alexander the Great

No. Probably would have killed them if there were any around. Alexander would have killed Japanese teenage school girls and Swedish supermodels who got in the way. In fact, Alexander managed to kill more Greeks than anyone else did, until that time. He was also hell on Persians, Indians, proto-Afghans, Mesopotamians, Jews, Egyptians, and well, you get the point. Did manage to make the Afghans part of the Hellinized world for a short time.

(b) Pope Innocent III

Not guilty.

(c) George H.W. Bush

Nope. Kept casualties pretty low in Gulf War I.

(d) George W. Bush

Okay. Here's where it gets tricky. Likely casualties in Iraq have been in the 50,000 range. Calculating losses in Afghanistan gets tricky because there was already a civil war in the north of the country and deadly repression elsewhere, in September, 2001. Pick the high side of estimates, and deaths total about 75,000. Discarding the fantasies of the far left, and figure of 150,000 is the absolute high end. So far.

(e) Joseph "Uncle Joe" Stalin

Ah, the big leagues. Hard to know, really. Stalin deported many Muslim groups to Siberia (setting the stage for recent ethnic troubles). Being a Georgian, he had a strong cultural bias against Caucasian Muslims. His regime may have killed, directly and through neglect, one million Muslims, but that may be an over-estimate. One thing working in the favor of Soviet Muslims: most fighting in World War II took place to the north and west of their homelands.

(f) Heinrich Himmler

No way. Himmler loved Muslims and set up an SS Muslim brigade, manned by volunteers recruited by the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem. They were the only SS unit to wear fezes.

(g) Saddam Hussein

Back to the big leagues. Diplomats in Baghdad say at least one million died in the Iran-Iraq war. Then there were the Marsh Arabs and various Kurd and Sunni Iraqis that suffered genocide, plus the Iraqi losses in the Kuwait campaign, pushing Saddam's numbers far above Stalin's.

(h) Moshe Dayan

Nope. Israeli general. Great tactician, but no murderer.

(i) John II Monologue of Byzantium

I made him up.


Anonymous said...

Not to derail the thread, but given your post a little while back on the "recycler lightning" bugs, thought this may be of interest:

OJ said...

an interesting quiz.

One thing with stalin is that his number does go up if you count the post world war 2 famine in central asia and other parts of the soviet union.

depending on how much blame you assign him for this (soviet agricultural policies were not very good plus he sent the food to the conquered germans) his numbers may near or surpass saddam.

Ottawa Watch said...

I thought about that, and about the massacres of Muslims in India at the time of Independence. I'm not sure you can tag an individual with either of those. The Central Asian famine seems different from the Depression-era deliberate starvation of the Ukraine.