Many of the biggest traitors in world history are prominent political figures in the government or in the military. These traitors often sell their country by offering confidential information or handing over their military in exchange for money or control in a new government of their own. These traitors have been despised by millions even after facing their deathbed! Do you know Vidkun Quisling who willingly accepted the invasion in his own land in exchange for a puppet government under his administration? How about Marcus Brutus who has been famously depicted in Shakespearean plays? Get to know more about these people in this list of 10 Biggest Traitors in World History!
10- Gaius Cassius Longinus
Gaius Cassius Longinus was a famous traitor during the Great Roman Civil War and was known to have always hated tyrants. During that conflict, Cassius chose to side with Optimates and Pompey because of his fear that Julius Caesar would eventually turn to a dictator. After Pompey's defeat in battle, he escaped for Hellespont but was arrested by Caesar. Despite being acquitted for his betrayal, he still plotted an assassination to the newly held dictator along with Brutus. After two years, he killed himself.
9- Robert Hanssen
A former FBI agent of the United States, Robert Hanssen was a spy of the Soviet Union and the post-communist Russia for two decades, from which he earned over $1.4 million cash and some diamonds! During his trial, he pleaded a lesser offense of death penalty for a plea of guilty to 15 counts of espionage and conspiracy. Thereafter, he was convicted for life sentence in a solitary confinement in Colorado.
8- Guy Fawkes
Have you watched the movie "V for Vendetta"? Then you must be familiar with Guy Fawkes. He was a Catholic Englishman who planned to blow up the Parliament building in order to assassinate the Protestant King James I and his fellow government officials - known as the Gundpowder Plot. However, the police authorities were tipped beforehand through an anonymous letter so he was captured with 36 barrels of gunpowder. He was convicted of death sentence by hanging but, instead, he committed suicide before the sentence.
7- Augusto Pinochet
Augusto Pinochet was a leader of the Chilean military army during the administration of Salvador Allende in 1973. Three weeks after his appointment, he staged a military coup that successfully overthrew the President and replaced him as dictator. During the coup, he organized a plane for the President for his escape, but his real intention was to throw him out from the aircraft during his flight. His tyrannical regime reigned for almost 17 years!
6- Judas Escariot
Probably the oldest traitor in history is Judas Escariot. According to the scriptures, Judas sold Jesus for thirty pieces of silver during the Last Supper. After the meal, they were led to the garden where he betrayed Jesus with a kiss - most popularly known as Judas' Kiss. Few days after, he committed suicide by hanging himself to a tree after returning the silver paid to him.
5- Wang Jingwei
Wang Jingwei started as a member of the left-wing Chinese Nationalist Party known as the Kuomintang (KMT). He was a proven patriot of the Republic until the time of Japanese occupation during 1937. He conspired with the Japanese and agreed to organize a puppet government in Nanjing, known as the Reorganized National Government. He died in 1944 and his puppet state collapsed after the defeat of the Imperial Japanese.
4- Benedict Arnold
Before he became a traitor, Benedict Arnold was a hero of the United States Army, during the Revolution, after capturing and winning many battles against the country's state enemies. However, after being given no credit to his success and, instead, humiliated by his enemies, he grew bitter to the country he once served and betrayed it in favor of the British government. After his plan was exposed by a British spy captured by the Americans, he escaped and joined the British forces in fighting against his own people.
3- Marcus Brutus
Together with Cassius, Marcus Brutus is also one of the biggest traitors in history. He had been known to show hate and vengeance towards tyrants, so when he was offered by Cassius a plan to assassinate the newly elected dictator, he willingly conspired with him. That is even after Caesar showed him mercy and even appointing him in a political seat. After the assassination, and when Antony succeeded the crown, he committed suicide.
2- Vidkun Quisling
Vidkun Quisling was a famous traitor during the reign of Nazis in WWII. During the invasion of the Nazis in Norway in 1940, Quisling, who was then a Minister of Defense, willingly accepted the occupation and even acceded to creating a puppet government. During this time of occupation from 1942 to 1945, he seated as the President of the said new government. After the fall of Nazis, he was captured and sentenced to face a firing squad.
1- Mir Jafar
Known as the "Betrayer of the True Faith", Mir Jafar was a leader of the Nawab of Bengal who sold over the Bengali Army at the Battle of Plassey to the British East India Company, under the deal with Robert Clive. In exchange for the betrayal, Mir Jafar was promised control over the puppet state after paying large amount of bribes to the company. Although he tried to stop the foreign invasion at some point, he took over the throne until his death in 1765. He was known to be the last ruler of the autonomous state of Bengal.