images (4)


The deteriorating state of Amin’s personal life and state of transformation

Within the decade of the 1970s, Amin’s own behaviour and way of life were undergoing transformations as he became more unpredictable. During the 1960s and 1970s, the dictator was said to have married at least six different women. He was a polygamist. In the year 1974, he divorced three of these individuals, and in the months that followed, two of them passed away under mysterious circumstances. Following that, in the summer of 1975, he tied the knot with Sarah Kyolaba, a go-go dancer who was only 19 years old. The wedding was a massive affair that cost two million pounds, and Yasser Arafat, the leader of the Palestinian people, served as his best man. It is possible that he had as many as fifty children in total, and it is also possible that he had many more children through his many concubines. A significant number of these were brought up in a variety of palaces and luxury houses that Amin gradually acquired all over the country. In the meantime, Amin, who had been physically fit and a passionate sportsman when he was younger, reached his fifties and began to experience a gradual increase in his size. He was a rabidly paranoid individual who was concerned about conspiracies being launched against him. This is a concern that is not unjustifiable for an individual in his position; however, this concern frequently escalated into bouts of pure insanity. In later years, Bob Astles recounted the experience of being contacted by government officials who believed that he had acted as a moderating influence on Amin during times when he was, quote, “out of control.”

The syphilis virus

Syphilis’s Influence on Amin’s Behaviour and Behaviour

An issue that appears to have become a major factor affecting his personality and his actions as ruler of Uganda was the fact that he had contracted syphilis in his younger years and by the 1970s may have been suffering from partial dementia as a result of tertiary syphilis. This was a problem that seemed to have become a major factor. Given this, it is possible that some of his more peculiar behaviours, as well as the allegations of cannibalism that were levelled against him towards the end of his dictatorship, could be explained. It was in the late 1970s when an Israeli physician who had previously worked in Uganda made the following statement: “It is no secret that Amin is suffering from the advanced stages of syphilis, which has caused brain damage.” It is possible that this is also the reason why Amin sent a telegram to Kurt Waldheim, who was serving as the secretary general of the United Nations at the time. In the telegram, Amin praised the actions of Adolf Hitler, the Nazi dictator of Germany, and seemed to imply that the Holocaust was carried out by setting people on fire with gas. Following this, it became increasingly apparent that Africa was dealing with a partial madman. The message quickly spread to the leaders of the world, and it became clear that this was the case. While this was going on, Amin’s relations with the Soviet Union, which was one of his last remaining supporters economically and militarily, were damaged as a result of the praise that he heaped on German actions during the Second World War.

The Participation of Amin in Multiple International Crises

The incident of Entebbe Airport being hijacked

All of this was compounded in 1976 by one of the most notorious incidents that was associated with Amin and his regime. On the 27th of June during that summer, a plane belonging to Air France was taken over by terrorists while it was travelling from Tel Aviv to Paris via Athens. It was rerouted to Entebbe Airport, which is located outside of Kampala, and it quickly became apparent to the international media that Amin was working in conjunction with Palestinian terrorists and members of the Revolutionary Zellen, which was a West German urban guerrilla movement that was responsible for the hijacking. Within the hours that followed, the passengers who were not Jewish were freed from the plane. At the same time, demands were made that dozens of Palestinian political prisoners who were being held in Israel be released. If this was not done, the kidnappers would begin the process of executing the Jewish hostages on July 1st. Nevertheless, what transpired was a remarkable rescue operation in which Israeli commandos flew from Israel to Uganda, refuelling in Nairobi, which is located in the neighbouring country of Kenya, in order to liberate the hostages. Because the Israeli contractors had constructed the airport at Entebbe many years earlier, they were familiar with the precise layout of the airport. As a consequence of this, on the evening of July 4th, approximately one hundred Israeli commandos were able to land in a surprise attack, free nearly all of the hostages, blow up the majority of the Ugandan air force’s fighter planes that were stationed at Entebbe, and then take off again out of Uganda. All of these events occurred in a mission that lasted for only ninety minutes. As soon as Amin awoke the following morning, he was both perplexed and furious by the events that had transpired. Amin’s participation in the facilitation of the hijacking of the Air France flight by Palestinians in the summer of 1976 was just one of the increasingly provocative activities he was engaging in on the international stage during the latter half of the 1970s.

lAggressive Posturing on the International Stage

To a large extent, it was evident that the Kenyan government had made it easier for the Israeli mission to liberate their citizens at Entebbe by allowing them to refuel in Nairobi. There is no doubt that Amin’s increasingly jingoistic attitude towards the Kenyan regime was a source of annoyance for everyone involved. In the year 1902, the British government had incorporated a significant portion of what was then known as western Kenya into the boundaries of the protectorate of Uganda. Following Kenya’s attainment of its independence, these very same lands were eventually recaptured and incorporated into the country. However, around the middle of the 1970s, Amin started to push a claim that was largely without foundation, which was that this region of western Kenya was actually Ugandan land or a part of a “greater Uganda.” If this had occurred, there is no doubt that the government in Nairobi would have been more inclined to support the Israeli rescue mission that took place in July of 1976. However, it did have repercussions because in the weeks that followed the incident with Air France, Amin carried out a series of retaliatory killings that resulted in the deaths of hundreds or even thousands of ethnic Kenyans who were residing in Uganda.

Disputes between Amin and various religious groups and opposition

Throughout the middle of the 1970s, religious leaders all over Uganda had become increasingly concerned about the divisive nature of the regime’s approaches towards Uganda’s Muslim population and its Christian population. Amin had purposefully solicited the support of the Muslim populace while simultaneously suppressing a number of Christian churches. In the latter part of 1976, the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Janani Luwum, presided over a conference that included leaders from the Anglican, Catholic, and Muslim communities. He had been particularly vocal about the necessity of reducing religious tensions. It was at this meeting that an agreement was reached, which stated that all parties involved would work going forward to ease religious divisions within the country. However, when Amin, who had not been informed of the gathering beforehand, learned of this, he had Luwum arrested on fabricated charges of having plotted an armed insurrection. After that, on February 17, 1977, Luwum was displayed in front of the international media in a manner that was basically a parade. Amin’s regime issued a statement the following day stating that the archbishop had been killed in a car accident. The statement was issued the day after. In spite of this, nobody was fooled, and subsequent reports indicate that Amin may have even shot Luwum himself. Following that, the archbishop was hailed as a martyr throughout the world. After that, Amin was not invited to a meeting of the heads of the Commonwealth states, which was another indication of how unstable he was and how isolated his regime had become. This occurred shortly after the previous event. The actions taken by Luwum and the other religious leaders were illustrative of the manner in which senior figures in Uganda were becoming more and more opposed to Amin’s regime. This extended all the way up to the ranks of his organisation. Already in 1975, Amin’s Finance Minister, Emmanuel Blayo Wakhweya, had defected to Britain while he was in London. However, the defection of Henry Kyemba, Amin’s Health Minister, in 1977 was even more damaging than the previous one. A State of Blood, a blistering indictment of Amin’s brutality and bloodletting, was published shortly after Kyemba penned an account of the Amin regime from the inside. Kyemba’s account was published as A State of Blood. Nevertheless, despite the fact that the international community’s disdain for Amin and his regime severely hindered Amin’s ability to govern Uganda, it would not be enough to remove him from power.

Political rifts and betrayals within the organisation

As long as Amin maintained a complete command over the armed forces and the government within the borders of the country, he would be able to continue to hold his position. Nevertheless, this was becoming less and less the case. By the end of 1977, a rift had developed within the Ugandan military between those who continued to be unwaveringly loyal to Amin and those who favoured the Vice President, General Mustafa Adrisi, over the crazed individual that Amin appeared to be at the time. Amin would enter into a conflict that would ultimately result in the downfall of his regime in 1978. He did so with the intention of bolstering his own authority and aware of Adrisi’s growing power. This conflict would ultimately lead to the downfall of his regime. The relationship between Amin’s Uganda and Tanzania, which is located to the south, had been tense and even hostile at times for a number of years. Milton Obote had established himself in exile in this location in 1971, and it was from this location that some of his supporters attempted to launch the unsuccessful invasion of Uganda in the autumn of 1972. In addition, by the time the 1970s came to a close, it had become the impetus for Amin’s ultimate rebellion.

Political rifts and betrayals within the organisation

The rebellion occurred in the southern region of Uganda, close to the Tanzanian border, in the late autumn of 1978. The troops were loyal to Adrisi. When fighting broke out in this area, Amin made the decision to effectively turn the engagement into a war with Tanzania. This would allow him to strengthen his support within Uganda and allow him to consolidate his control over the country. It’s possible that he made this decision with a half-hearted attitude when he realised that he had lost control of certain elements of the army on the southern border, and he wanted to take credit for their incursions into Tanzanian territory afterward. The beginning of the Uganda-Tanzania War was a successful one for Amin, regardless of the circumstances. Amin was able to announce that he intended to annex the Kagera region of northern Tanzania as 1978 was coming to a close. This was made possible by Ugandan forces entering the region in large numbers during the early winter months and occupying it in such a way that they were able to do so. On the other hand, the circumstances would go through a dramatic transformation in 1979. Julius Nyerere, the president of Tanzania, initiated the mobilisation of the Tanzanian People’s Defence Force in January 1979 with the intention of launching an assault against Amin’s armies who were located further north. A large group of Ugandans who had been living in exile in Tanzania and who were opposed to the Amin regime decided to join them. These Ugandans had been living in Tanzania. Amin’s forces began to lose ground in certain areas as they moved north, while in other areas they were defeated against them. By crossing the western border into the Congo, some units were able to escape. In the course of the transition from winter to spring in 1979, the majority of the population was gradually compelled to return to Kampala. Amin was now desperately looking for assistance from other countries; however, despite his appeals to Saudi Arabia and Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, he received only minimal support from Gaddafi in Libya and the Palestinian Liberation Organisation. The battle of Lukaya, which took place on March 10 and 11, was the decisive engagement of the war. It took place south-west of Kampala and was the final engagement of the conflict. There, a joint Tanzanian and Ugandan exile army, which had little tank support but far superior infantry numbers, was able to overrun a force consisting of 2,000 Ugandan troops and 1,000 Libyans, which was supported by 18 tanks. During the hours that followed the defeat, and as the news of it arrived in Kampala, many people urged Amin to accept the situation and step down as the leader of Uganda. At the very end, Amin maintained his defiant stance in Kampala. Even though Tanzanian and Ugandan exile troops were drawing near to Entebbe airport, which is located on the shores of Lake Victoria to the southwest of the capital, he refused to back down and even fired Yusuf Gowon, who was serving as his military chief of staff prior to the conflict. It was on April 11, 1979, the date that is generally considered to be the date that marked the end of the Idi Amin regime in Uganda, that he eventually fled from Kampala by helicopter. This was due to the fact that the number of supporters he had was decreasing, and the belligerents were getting closer and closer to the capital itself. On the other hand, peace did not immediately return to Uganda in the months that followed in its wake. In May of 1980, a new military coup took place, which was followed by the formation of a loose civilian government that was comprised of various interest groups. However, this government was unable to function effectively, and it was severely divided. In the short term, this would result in the establishment of a military government; however, in contrast to Amin in 1971, the interim military governor, Paulo Muwunga, was successful in paving the way for elections and a transition to a civilian government by the end of 1980. During these elections, none other than Milton Obote was re-elected to the position of president of Uganda. However, Milton Obote’s return to power in the elections of 1980 was met with opposition from a number of different parties. The Uganda People’s Congress, which is led by Obote, was favoured in the elections, according to the beliefs of a number of groups, which may or may not have been supported by substantial evidence. As a consequence of this, a guerrilla war broke out in Uganda at the same time that Obote was taking office for a new term as president. This war was fought between his government and those who did not acknowledge its status as legitimate.

Tags: No tags

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *