History’s Biggest Psychopaths

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Everyone is well aware of the atrocities committed by Adolf Hitler. And many will be familiar that under Joseph Stalin’s stern leadership, the number of those killed from starvation and murder ranges from 10 to 60 million. Unfortunately, they aren’t the only ones who have taken history and left a nasty stain in its pages. Here is a list of eight lesser known psychos in history.

Leopold II
leopol5a King of Belgium from 1865 to 1909, Leopold II is best known for creating the Congo Free State project, which led to the demise of at least three million Congolese people. Funded by the government, the project was instituted to extract rubber and ivory from the Congo region of central Africa. Unfortunately, this endeavor required forced labor on the part of the Congolese, with Leopold calling the shots via his own army, the Force Publique. The atrocities committed under his regime involved enslaving the native population, torture, maiming and slaughter. Today, Leopold’s legacy lives on, as contemporary Congolese leaders forge on with policies of legalized robbery, which is enforced by an army that continues to serve as a coercive, armed force against an unarmed population.

Pol Pot
ca. September 1978, Phnom Penh, Cambodia --- Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot a few months before Vietnam installed a new government in Cambodia, in January 1979. Between 1976 and 1979, he was the Prime Minister of Democratic Kampuchea. --- Image by © Richard Dudman/Sygma/CorbisBorn to a farming family in 1925, Pol Pot became the leader of the Khmer Rouge party and Prime Minister of Cambodia from 1976 to 1979. He had held the position in a de facto role since mid-1975, but after coming into proper power, imposed a fierce agrarian policy that led to the demise of 25 per cent of the Cambodian population. Pol Pot formed a Communist peasant farming society, where all of Cambodia’s cities were forcibly vacated, and the two million residents were forced to live and work in the countryside. The citizens were forced into slave labor – work began from 4am and lasted until 10pm, overlooked by Khmer Rouge soldiers.Aside from slave labor, the citizens had to endure malnutrition (workers were permitted one 180-gram tin of rice every two days), poor medical care and executions if there was any infraction. Worst of all, the Khmer Rouge committed mass executions and burials in “Killing Fields”, carried out using hammers, axe handles, spades or sharpened bamboo sticks. His regime came to an end in when the Vietnamese army invaded Cambodia and drove out Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge Party. It is estimated that two million people died under his regime. Pot died of a heart attack before he could be tried in court for the events of 1975 to 1979.

Ivan IV of Russia
Ivan_the_Terrible_(cropped) Ivan IV of Russia – better known as Ivan the Terrible – was the Grand Prince of Moscow from 1533 to 1547, and the first Tsar of Russia from 1547 until his death in 1584. His lengthy reign was marked by the expansion of the Russian borders and its progression from being a medieval state to a powerful empire. Ivan reigned peacefully at the beginning, not receiving the sobriquet until later. Unfortunately, this early benevolence was also marked by a stockpiling of atrocities throughout his quest for expansion and Ivan’s penchant for controlling the population via military rule. In 1570, for example, Ivan was under the impression that the elite of the city of Novgorod planned to defect to Poland, and led an army to stop them. His army subsequently built walls around the perimeter of the city to prevent escapees and rounded up civilians, torturing and killing between 500 and 1000 in front of Ivan. He also executed and exiled members of the princely clans on grounds of conspiracy. Perhaps explaining some of his actions as bloodthirsty paranoid ruler in chief, Ivan also supposedly suffered from mental illness. Such illness might also explain his decision to beat his pregnant daughter-in-law, causing a miscarriage, and accidentally fatally striking his son after the son learned of it.

Elizabeth Bathory
image17 Inspiration for the Countess Dracula and deemed one of the most prolific serial killers of all time, Elizabeth Bathory was a countess from the Carpathian Mountains in Hungary who specialized in the grotesque and purely vile. Though the number of her victims is disputed, it is believed that she was responsible for torturing and killing hundreds of girls from 1585 to 1610. Her execution methods were incredibly disturbing, as she would torture the girls while naked, forcing them to eat their own flesh, stabbing them with needles and burning parts of the face, genitalia and other bits of their flesh. Bathory would torture them for weeks, and many would starve or else be burned or frozen to death. It is also widely believed that she would bathe in their blood, under the delusion it would help her retain her youth. Her affluence and family name kept her from being put on trial, but she was forced to while away the remainder of her life in a single room.

Heinrich Himmler
???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? Born in 1900, Heinrich Himmler was the second most powerful Nazi and possibly the most feared man in Nazi Germany. As the leader of the SS Party from 1929 to 1945, Himmler was responsible for conceiving and implementing the Final Solution – the Nazi plan to murder the Jews of Europe – and orchestrating the Holocaust. Himmler served as the head of the unified police forces in Germany and also held command of the German concentration camps – organizing and ensuring that the death trains ran on time and that the camps adhered to strict business standards. His decisions aided in the death of six to seven million Jews, Poles, Russians, communists, and other groups as the Nazis pressed on for a “pure” future. It is also said that Himmler’s house contained furniture and books made from the bones and skins of his Jewish victims. He eventually committed suicide by eating poison in 1945.

Adolf Eichmann
nazi-136398204840902601 Adolf Eichmann was a German Nazi and one of the Holocaust’s main orchestrators. He stood charge over the mass deportation of Jews into concentration camps during World War Two, tirelessly working to organize the registration, cremation and transportation of Jews hailing from Eastern Europe. Within two short months, from May to July 1944, Eichmann was responsible for the deaths of over 400,000 Hungarian Jews. Overall, Eichmann oversaw the deaths of five to six million Jews, even remarking that he would kill his own father if he was ordered to do so. Eichmann eluded capture for 15 years, but was eventually tried and hanged for his crimes in 1962. Showing neither hatred nor mental illness during his trial, Eichmann provided evidence that, according to Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal, you don’t need to be sadistic or mentally ill to kill millions; a desire to “do your duty” will suffice.

Tomas de Torquemada
itorqum001p1 Tomás de Torquemada was the Grand Inquisitor of Spain who actually established the Spanish Inquisition on November 1, 1478. The tribunal was run by the Spanish monarchy to weed out anyone that they believed to pose a threat to the Roman Catholic Church in Spain. The Inquisition led to the death, torture and rape of thousands – usually without evidence. Torquemada would order Jews to be tortured or killed, inventing several specific torture techniques just for them. People were tortured through means of burning, suffocation and starvation, and were often forced to give up their properties. Specific torture schemes included the garrucha (pulling a prisoner’s arms and legs from their sockets), the toca (water was forced down the victim’s throat) and porto (tight cords tied around the victim to stop blood from flowing). de Torquemada is believed to have presided over the killings of 30,000 people, and to have influenced the exile of 200,000 to 300,000 Jews or Muslims who did not embrace Christianity from Spain. After all of his atrocities, Torquemada died of old age in 1498.

Josef Mengele
WP_Josef_Mengele_1956 Known as “Angel of Death”, Josef Mengele worked as a physician in the Auschwitz concentration camp. He was in charge of selecting the Jews who were sent to the concentration camps, to be killed and also for performing cruel, disturbing experiments on the imprisoned. Mengele’s most popular experiment was with twins, as he would pour chemicals into their eyes to see if they would change color, try to change their sex, and literally sew them together to see if he could create conjoined twins. He experimented on 3000 twins, of whom only 200 survived. The Angel of Death would sometimes force parents to kill their own kids, torture children to see how long they will survive, beat prisoner’s death and send over 400,000 people to their deaths in the gas chambers. Mengele escaped to South America with his family and died while swimming in 1979.

SOURCE: http://all-that-is-interesting.com/historys-biggest-psychos