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Mohammed Zahir Shah
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Monarch
    (October 15, 1914-July 23, 2007)
    Born in Kabul, Afghanistan
    Last king of Afghanistan (1933-73)
    Overthrown while undergoing eye surgery in Italy
    He married his cousin.
    For the first 30 years of his reign, power was actually wielded by his uncles.
    He favored members of his own tribe in government appointments, alienating other ethnic groups.
    Shortly before the coup that deposed him, the British embassy described him as 'aloof and inaccessible,' a king who 'stayed in his palaces and didn't tour the country.'
    He was married to Humaira Begum for 71 years.
    After he took power from his uncles, he tried to turn Afghanistan into a constitutional monarchy, introducing a parliament and free elections (1964).
    He survived an attempt on his life by a knife-wielding assassin posing as a Portuguese journalist (1991).
    At the loya jirga convened to choose a post-Taliban government for Afghanistan, he was rumored to be the top choice of a majority of delegates (2002).
    He was pressured by the US into publicly stepping aside in favor of the American-backed Hamid Karzai.
    Instead, he was given the honorific title 'Father of the Nation' as a symbol of national unity.

Credit: C. Fishel


    In 2018, Out of 32 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
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    In 2014, Out of 8 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
 
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