There are tyrannical rulers aplenty in our world, but only a select few achieve a status where even their birthday bashes disgust people.
On top of this list is Zimbabwe's longtime president, Robert Mugabe, whose 91st birthday party saw a number of wild animals slaughtered and fed to him and his guests.
It is believed that the nonagenarian spent $1 million on his extravagant party despite the fact that his country has one of the weakest economies in the world and an average Zimbabwean's annual income is just $1,041.
The party, which took place at a resort in Victoria Falls, was attended by 20,000 of Mugabe's friends, political allies and other guests. And among the animals slaughtered for the big feast were an elephant, two buffaloes, two sables, five impalas, a lion and a crocodile – all of whom were gifts from a local landowner. After the party, a separate elephant was expected to be killed and given to the local Victoria Falls public, too.
Another group of his political cronies gave him 40 cows to commemorate the day of birth of their leader, who has long been accused of violating human rights and curbing democracy through power and force.
While Cecil the lion's killing drew international media attention, not many take notice of Mugabe's needless killings of wild animals year after year. Only a select few wildlife conservationists and his political opponents muttered words of disapproval.
"All the money that has been collected to bankroll this obscene jamboree should be immediately channeled towards rehabilitating the collapsed public hospitals, clinics and rural schools in Matebeleland North province," said opposition party MDC spokesman Obert Gutu.
Similarly, Mugabe's seven birthday cakes were just as obscene with each as large as a single mattress.
To top it off, he gave a long speech in which he criticized the U.S. for killing his country's animals on their turf yet still imposing sanctions on them.
The U.S. "can't have it both ways," he said. "If they want to be friends then they must be friends with us in total and we allow them to have some safaris. But they can't say 'allow our people to visit, allow our people to have safaris, to kill our lions and take safari trophies to America.'"