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Sacha Baron Cohen banned? No, but 'General Aladeen' is. Woe be unto Dictators.

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Phil McCarten/Reuters

(Read caption) In this October 2006 file photo, actor Sacha Baron Cohen, who played the character Borat, arrives for the US premiere of 'Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit the Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan' at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. Cohen, who portrays General Aladeen in the upcoming film 'Dictator,' has been asked by the Academy not to dress as 'General Aladeen' at the Oscars on Sunday.

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It’s hard to imagine how 2012 could be any worse for the world’s hapless and beleaguered dictators and warlords after that (ahem) horrible Arab Spring craze last year – with people-power movements toppling despots in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya.

Consider the arrest warrants for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and former Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, issued by the International Criminal Court at the Hague, the anticipated human rights investigation of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, the looming trials of former Chadian dictator Hissène Habré and former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo, the pending verdict on former Liberian President Charles Taylor, and the ongoing manhunt for Joseph Kony, warlord and founder of the genocidal Lord’s Resistance Army in the dense borderlands of the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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