How Dictators Remain in Power – Jayden, Grade 7

How Dictators Remain in Power – Jayden, Grade 7

How Dictators Remain in Power 

People need to be careful of dictators, who are greedy for more power. The novella Animal Farm by George Orwell is about a farm with a cruel owner. One day, the animals decide to kick him out of the farm. Two boars named Snowball and Napoleon take over the farm. They are always in disagreement until Snowball is chased out by the dogs raised by Napoleon. The pigs change the rules of the farms to benefit themselves and leave the rest of the animals to do all the work. They use the dogs to intimidate others or kill animals, and use false information to mislead animals. The pigs soon start to do what humans do. Dictators, like Napoleon in the novella Animal Farm by George Orwell, use force and intimidation, propaganda, and scapegoating in order to oppress and mislead their populations and keep their dictatorial power. 

Dictators use violence and intimidation in order to oppress the people and keep their power. In Animal Farm, Napoleon uses force and intimidation against others to keep them in check and to have all the power.  He uses nine dogs to execute the animals who oppose him and confess to be secretly working with Snowball. “When they had finished their confession, the dogs promptly tore their throats out… .”  Soon after, Napoleon leaves the other animals frightened after what happens by showing them what he can do to them. The animals “were shaken and miserable. They did not know which was more shocking…” So, Napoleon uses force and violence in order to remain the dictator on the farm. In the real world, dictators also apply intimidation and violence to oppress their people and have full power. For example, the dictator of Iraq,  Saddam Hussein. He made others do what he wanted by scaring them with punishment or violence and also did not allow anyone to speak out and have an opinion. Although intimidation is a very important tool in any dictator’s toolbox, it is not the only one. 

Dictators also use propaganda in order to oppress and mislead the people to keep their power and trust from the people. Napoleon uses a pig called Squealer to spread propaganda among the animals to trick and make them believe that Snowball is their enemy, and is the cause of every problem that occurs. The animals believe Squealer because they are uneducated and will fall for anything. For example, Squealer says that Snowball has been with Jones the whole time. Squealer accuses him of conspiring with Mr. Jones and claims “That was part of the arrangement!”  and that “Jones’s shot only grazed him.”  He claims to be able to “show them this in his own writing if they were able to read it. The plot was for Snowball.” He also makes them believe that their leader is very heroic and saves them even though that is a lie. He claims that Mr. Jones “WOULD have succeeded if it had not been for their heroic Leader, Comrade Napoleon.”  Napoleon uses other pigs to spread propaganda in order to keep power. Many dictators in the real world use propaganda in order to keep their dictatorial power. For example, Adolf Hitler the leader of Nazi Germany from 1934 to 1945 used propaganda to spread his ideas about Aryan supremacy, which soon lead to World War II and the Holocaust. Many dictators use the same strategies to achieve the same thing, and there are many other ways. 

Dictators use scapegoats in order to cover up their weaknesses and keep their power. Like other dictators, Napoleon finds someone to make them their enemy by manipulating others by blaming a specific person/animal for something that has happened. For example, Napoleon asks “Comrades,” he said quietly, “Do you know who is responsible for this? “ he then says “Do you know the enemy who has come in the night and overthrown our windmill? SNOWBALL!” He is constantly blaming Snowball in order to mislead and keep power. He also claims that “Snowball has done this thing! In sheer malignity….” Because he wants to “…set back our plans and avenge himself for his ignominious expulsion…destroyed our work of nearly a year.”  Scapegoating is very commonly used by dictators, because of their own problems. For example, a leader named Idi Amin ruled Uganda. He had problems fixing the problems of the country. So, he blamed Asian people for all the problems in the country just because they looked different. He even kicked several of them out. Many dictators use the same strategies for the same reasons.

Therefore, Napoleon is a brutal dictator as he uses violence. He also uses false information and scapegoats others, because he does not want others to focus on his mistakes. People should be aware of dictators who are greedy for more power and would do anything to stay in power.