Academic journal article Chicago Review

The Dictatorship

Academic journal article Chicago Review

The Dictatorship

Article excerpt

The Dictator's rule lasted for a long time, until finally enough was enough. At the head of the discontented populace stood a young and ambitious General, commander of a provincial garrison. Together with his subdivisions, he entered the capital in a forced march, and surrounded the presidential palace. The Dictator's Praetorian Guard fought to the last, but victory for the revolution was inevitable. After a brief siege, the rebel army stormed the palace. While the last of the praetorians was being slaughtered, the General, a few officers, and a foreign press correspondent headed for the Dictator's private office. It was an underground shelter in the very heart of the palace, a most secret of secret chambers-and one that had become shrouded in legend. None but the Dictator could gain entry. It was said that the state's treasury and all the important documents concerning domestic and foreign policies were to be found there.

The armored door stood half-open. Before an immense, gilded mahogany desk, in an imperial chair, sat the Dictator-his forehead resting on the desk top. Before him, on the otherwise empty desk, lay a revolver and a key. Apart from the desk and the chair, there was no other furniture in the shelter; instead it was completely filled, floor to ceiling, with cardboard boxes. With their bayonets, the officers tore open a box at random; and then, growing impatient, another and another, down to the last one. But all of them contained the same thing: the same little, cheap plastic Mickey Mouse doll, in vast numbers. …

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