Robert Mugabe was a hero of the struggle against colonialism and first leader of independent Zimbabwe. He then became a compromiser with imperialism—and finally a dictator. When Mugabe was born in Southern Rhodesia, 225,000 whites ruled over five million black people. Many activists, including Mugabe, believed armed struggle would be needed to shake off white rule. He helped to form the Zimbabwe African National Union (Zanu) in 1963, and was jailed almost immediately.