Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Dictators gone crazy for England

Limey blogger Harry Hutton noted:

"... it is my experience of life that there is a strong correlation between Anglophilia and being a nutter, especially when their Anglophilia has survived an actual visit to the UK."

One of his examples that stood out was the late Malawian dictator Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda, an oddly fervent Anglophile who sought to turn his picturesque central African nation into Stratford-on-Nyasa by virtue of building a Malawian replica of England's prestigious Eton College. It seems odd that the good doctor, who led the movement against English colonialism, would be so smitten with the culture of his former colonizers, but who am I to judge?

Another Anglophile tyrant was the equally dead dictator of Chile, General Augusto Pinochet who described the United Kingdom as "an ideal place to live". Ironically so because England isn't ruled by a demented brasshat dictator. Anyway, the General was so fond of England, he made excuses to visit at least twice a year, making a point to have tea with English Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher "whenever possible", and going shopping at Harrods. While Pinochet's rule wasn't quite as eccentric as Hastings Banda's, you have to wonder where on earth Pinochet developed such an admiration for England in the first place.

So chalk one up for Harry Hutton. Anglophiles are completely nuts.

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