The Dictator's Playbook
Profiles in Tyranny

PBS
PBS
The Dictator's Playbook - Profiles in Tyranny
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6 videos in this collection

Kim Il Sung
From guerrilla fighter to brutal dictator of North Korea--how did he build the most controlled society on earth and launch a dictatorship that has lasted for three generations?
Saddam Hussein
To maintain power, he used fear, intimidation and violence like few other dictators in history, but he made the fatal mistake of believing his regime could take on the world.
Benito Mussolini
From undermining judges to indoctrinating children, he forged key tactics for seizing power. He also created fascism, an ideology that would plunge Europe into darkness.
Manuel Noriega
He rose through the Panamanian military to become chief of intelligence--and then, military dictator. Money laundering, drug trafficking and political crimes led to his downfall.
Francisco Franco
He used the tactics of colonial war to win control of Spain. Driven by a deeply conservative vision, he used torture, murder and incarceration to transform Spanish society.
Idi Amin
Through a combination of populist charm and brutal violence, backed up by a vast police state, he ruled Uganda for eight years--until his strategic blunders brought him down.

Related videos

Kim Il Sung
PBS
From guerrilla fighter to brutal dictator of North Korea--how did he build the most controlled society on earth and launch a dictatorship that has lasted for three generations?
Saddam Hussein
PBS
To maintain power, he used fear, intimidation and violence like few other dictators in history, but he made the fatal mistake of believing his regime could take on the world.
Francisco Franco
PBS
He used the tactics of colonial war to win control of Spain. Driven by a deeply conservative vision, he used torture, murder and incarceration to transform Spanish society.
Manuel Noriega
PBS
He rose through the Panamanian military to become chief of intelligence--and then, military dictator. Money laundering, drug trafficking and political crimes led to his downfall.
Idi Amin
PBS
Through a combination of populist charm and brutal violence, backed up by a vast police state, he ruled Uganda for eight years--until his strategic blunders brought him down.
Fearless - The Stories of Those Who Disappeared During the Guatemalan Civil War
A group of relatives of people who disappeared during the Guatemalan military dictatorship requested and obtained, among many other measures of compensation, the production of a documentary film describing the events by the State. It was in 2012 when the Inter-American Court for Human Rights condemned for the first time…
O Prólogo - 1960's Brazillian Political Cinema
Brazil, 1961. The unexpected resign of conservative president Janio Quadros brings a man linked to the left party to occupy his place. A group of entrepreneurs and military create an Institute to warn the population about the dangers of Communism in Brazil. To make the message spread in such a…
Benito Mussolini
PBS
From undermining judges to indoctrinating children, he forged key tactics for seizing power. He also created fascism, an ideology that would plunge Europe into darkness.
The City of Photographers (La ciudad de los fotógrafos) - Oppressed Chile Captured in Photographs
During the period of Pinochet's dictatorship (1973-1990), a group of photographers portrayed the harsh conditions Chilean society. In the streets, along the protests marches, these photographers developed and created a metaphoric political language. To take pictures was an expression of freedom and an attempt to survive. In addition to collecting…
Readymade - The Lives of Chairman Mao Impersonators
Mao Zedong died in 1976, but his impersonators are alive and well. This film documents the lives of two people who resemble Mao and assume Mao roles. Peng Tian is a villager from Mao's home province of Hunan, who walked into the Beijing Film Academy one day in full Mao…
The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu - A Portrait of the Romanian Dictator
A monumental achievement, THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF NICOLAE CEAUSESCU tracks the rise and fall of the infamous Romanian dictator through his own propaganda footage. Director Andrei Ujica crafted over 1,000 hours of official state broadcasts and intimate home movies into a tour-de-force that depicts how Ceausescu created the country in his…
The Rock - The Isolation of Gibraltar From Spain
Despite being declared enemies by their countries, people in the Rock of Gibraltar and La Linea depended on each other, got married, and lived with their bilingual children. But Franco's decision to close entrance to the British territory forced the separation of thousands of mixed families. THE ROCK examines the…