Indeed it seems you can divide most tyrants fairly easily into gluttonous maniacs and health nuts. In the first group, we find men like Tito, Mobutu, Idi Amin and Stalin, who used banqueting almost as a weapon against underlings and fellow heads of state. Georgian delicacies such as satsivi, a lukewarm chicken-and-walnut stew, would be served under the auspices of a toastmaster who would ensure that the group kept up an even pace of heavy drinking, sometimes until 5am. Khrushchev wet the bed after one feast, while Tito ended up vomiting into his jacket sleeve. It was even too much for a functioning alcoholic like Churchill, who in 1942 discovered that sweet red Khvanchara wine did not agree with him. It may be relevant, or it may not, that one Stalin’s chefs was Spiridon Putin, Vladimir’s grandfather.How a man like Antonio Salazar would have managed on such an occasion, one cannot imagine. The Portuguese autocrat was an extreme ascetic who lunched on fish-bone soup and would not take butter on his toast. At the other end of the scale, perhaps as a result of all the nourishing camel’s milk he drank, Muammar Gaddafi was famously flatulent. As indeed was Hitler, for reasons the Führer never understood. Clark and Scott claim that his famous (but patchy) vegetarianism was partly a tactic to manage his constant farting. Gaddafi was quite unembarrassed about his, as John Simpson can testify.

via Saddam’s chocolate and Gaddafi’s camel milk: tyrants’ meals revealed | Life and style | The Guardian.

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