How To Defeat A Dictator

According to Ghanaian economist George Ayittey here are the essential steps, strategies, and reforms needed in order to defeat a dictator. Individuals who live in countries ruled by a dictator should use this information as a guide to unlocking the potentials for their freedom.

Identifying the Problem

The Dictator: An individual who assumes and consolidates power through subversive means and governs by absolute rule. Guilty of abusing human rights and the rule of law. Suppresses free speech, assembly, and association. Arbitrary arrests and detains journalists, political opponents, and dissidents. Enforces extrajudicial killings of civilians, political opposition, and critics of the government. Engages in the widespread use a torture. Mismanages and manipulates the economy for personal gain. Has elections rigged through voter irregularities. Produces poverty and despair. Creates a climate of fear among society where peoples thoughts and opinions are reduced to self censorship due to retaliation from the government.

The Solution

The Three Cardinal Principals for Defeating a Dictator

1. A United Coalition of Opposition Forces. Assemble a small group of pro-democracy activists and plan strategically and coordinate the activities of the various opposition groups.

2. Expose the Dictators Strengths and Weaknesses. A popular revolution must wrestle control of at least one or more of the state institutions out of the dictators clutches. (the security forces, the media, the civil service, the judiciary, the electoral commission, and the central bank). Get the media out of the dictators hands. Use the dictators constitution against them. Stretch out the military geographically.

3. Getting the Right Sequence of Reform. (disassembling the dictatorship state)

After a dictator is ousted there needs to be a sequence of reform in order to prevent a new regime of creating another dictatorship.

The Five Essential Sequence of Reforms For Disassembling The Dictatorship State

1. Intellectual Reform: Freedom of Expression and a Free Media

2. Political Reform: Democratic Pluralism and Free and Fair Elections

3. Constitutional Reform: Limiting the Powers of the Executive Office

4. Institutional Reform: Independent Judiciary, Electoral Commission, Efficient Civil Service, and Neutral and Professional Armed Forces

5. Economic Reform: Free Markets and Free Trade

A point to remember while conducting reforms is that reform must come from within the country, made by the people themselves not by Western governments or financial institutions. All the sequence of reforms must be implemented in order for true reform to take place. The citizens must truly embrace the concept of intellectual freedom and freedom of the press for a healthy society to succeed politically.


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