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Genghis Khan, ruler of the Mongols, terrifying
conquistador and ruthless leader. He is best known for his vicious
nature and the tortures he inflicted upon all who opposed him. He
was, in fa...
Genghis Khan, ruler of the Mongols, terrifying conquistador and ruthless leader. He is best known for his vicious nature and the tortures he inflicted upon all who opposed him. He was, in fact, a great strategist and commander. It was he that accomplished the almost impossible task of unifying the then great powers of the Eastern and Western regions of Asia as well as parts of Europe.
He was raised in a rather pitiable atmosphere of death and pain. His birth name was Temujin, born to one of the many warring tribes that formed the population of ancient Mongolia. Legends hold that he was born clutching a blood clot in his hand, this was to be an omen that marked a great leader. He was forced to take control of his tribe by killing his half-brother to establish dominance. By making alliances or by sheer force, he managed to unify the many feuding tribes. Respect would only be gained through a show of power and brutality and Temujin amassed a large following with his skills as a warrior.
Ambition and need for further resources led him to invade the Xi Xia dynasty of China. Despite being heavily outnumbered and away from familiar territory, he gained the upper hand. He was crowned with the title Genghis Khan meaning universal ruler. A status of divinity became associated with him that also helped bring together soldiers under him. In the west, he attacked the regions that now form Uzbekistan, Iran and Afghanistan. The rulers of Turkish descent agreed to form a trade treaty which they later broke. Genghis Khan took this as a personal assault on his authority and led an army against them. Again, overcoming the disadvantage of being outnumbered, he destroyed the royal lineage and laid waste to the land, killing all who stood in his path.
He came to rule an empire that remained the largest in the world until the British Empire. It thrived for a long time after his death. Unlike his contemporaries, he assigned positions of command on basis of skill and not kinsmanship. He practised religious tolerance at a time when the concept was unheard of. His regulations and laws remained the basis for the functioning of the empire for years.