Ernesto Che Guevara

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The Left have been talking for decades about the CIA operation to assassinate Che. My parents spoke of the murder of Che as being one of the great disgraces of the United States... even though my mother was apparently friends with or was dating one of Che's assassins. Regardless my leftist parents have always felt that Che was a hero and this is reflected by Hollywood and the media. It is a lie and a myth. I am sorry to say I grew up thinking of Guevara as a freedom fighter myself.

ere are some lovely Che quotes that my Leftist mother failed to tell me about:

We're going to do for blacks exactly what blacks did for the revolution. By which I mean: nothing.

The Negro is indolent and lazy, and spends his money on frivolities, whereas the European is forward-looking, organized and intelligent.

Mexicans are a band of illiterate Indians.

Given the prevailing lack of discipline, it would have been impossible to use Congolese machine-gunners to defend the base from air attack: they did not know how to handle their weapons and did not want to learn

Increasingly, one hopes, Che's image is becoming openly mocked as the ugly reality of his life outlasts the shiny revolutionary veneer. As Alvaro Vargas Llosa reported five years ago, young Argentines have taken to sporting shirts emblazoned with the putdown, "I have a Che T-Shirt and I don't know why." The Australian band The Clap sings of the "Che Guevara T-Shirt Wearer" who has "no idea" of who he is. The Cuban punk band, Porno para Ricardo, which has been arrested for "social dangerousness," openly declaims the Castro regime and its heroes such as Guevara.

Karl Marx, of all people, once remarked that history repeats itself, the first time as tragedy and the second time as farce. Marx argued that history was the key to understanding the real world, and history is certainly no friend to Che Guevara. If his younger admirers study the historical Che--the one reputed to have declared "I feel my nostrils dilate savoring the acrid smell of gunpowder and blood of the enemy"--they will understand that Che's original influence was indeed tragic, not just for Cubans but for many others as well. And they just might skip the farce phase, out of deference to the many victims of the butcher of La CabaƱa
...I want to see more evidence before I am convinced that Che worship is really declining. Che wasn’t that important in and of himself. He was a second-rate functionary in a second-rate communist regime and later a fourth-rate guerrilla leader and terrorist who failed dismally in his efforts to spread communism beyond Cuba. Had Che never lived, Cuban communism would have been only marginally less oppressive than it actually was. Ultimately, the Cult of Che is deplorable less because of what it says about attitudes towards him than because it is the most blatant manifestation of our much broader tendency to ignore or downplay communist crimes.

How did he, a monstrous mass murderer, responsible for the blood curdling murders of thousands of teenagers, women and men, become a popular cultural figure embraced by the t-shirt industry, college students and hollywood directors? It's not like we walk around proclaiming Charles Manson a brilliant & kind revolutionary. There must be some machiavellian backdrop. Because this seems like an Alice in Wonderland upside- down world where we celebrate a cold-blooded killer.
On Tuesday Benicio del Toro, who plays Che in Soderbergh's new movie walked out during an interview because he was "uncomfortable" with the questions. He dedicated his Cannes award to Guevara.

I first noticed this cultural phenomenan when my step-son started using "Che" as his pen name on the internet. Then Gisele Bundchen catwalked in a "Che bikini", & suddenly everyone under 21 was wearing a Che Guevera t-shirt. Taco Bell dressed up its Chihuahua spokesdog like Che for its "Taco Revolution" ads and now Steven Soderbergh comes out with his Che Guevara movie.
Beloved revolutionary? Or serial killer?
Myth #1: He was an "intellectual".
Fact: One of the first acts Guevara is known for when he first came to Havana is a massive book burning. Then he signed death warrants for the authors and had them hunted down. He jailed or exiled most of Cuba's best filmmakers, poets and writers. In the mid-60's, thousands of "effeminate" teenagers were taken by force and dumped into prison camps he helped create where the logo read: "Work will make men out of you."

Myth #2: He was for the "people".
Fact: Guevara said he "manufactured evidence" and went on to say "I don't need proof to execute a man...I only need proof that it's necessary to execute him." When he addressed the U.N. in New York in 1964 he proclaimed, "Certainly we execute. And we will continue to execute as long as it is necessary." And he received applause for this. According to the Black Book of Communism, the revolution's firing squad executions, which he started, reached 14,000 by the beginning of the 1970's. The people's crimes? Being anti-Stalinist or being a practicing catholic, among others. He loved and promoted Stalinism, which of course was itself responsible for between 3.5 & 60 million deaths.
Myth #3: He was a Counter-Revolutionary just like U.S. 60's Hippies.
Fact: Che Guevara was anti-rock & roll, making it illegal to own a rock record, to listen to rock music or god forbid! actually play rock music. Che's own grandson, Canek Sanchez Guevara fled Cuba and lives in Mexico. He's a heavy metal rock guitarist and in an interview with Mexico's Proceso magazine said, "In Cuba freedom is nonexistent. The regime demands submission and obedience...the regime persecutes hippies, homosexuals, free-thinkers and poets. They employ constant surveillance, control and repression." He was one of the lucky ones; he got out alive. Although he blames Fidel for the repressive regime, it was his grandfather who helped create it.

Che was such a visionary, he helped create the notorious peligrosidad predelictiva law ("dangerousness likely to leading to crime"); which predated Tom Cruises' job in the movie "Minority Report". Like Minority Report, where a special police department called "Precrime" apprehends criminals based on foreknowledge provided by 3 psychics before any crime is actually committed; all you have to be arrested for in Cuba is your likelihood to commit a crime. Beaten, torture, labor camps, death.
And the machiavellian backdrop? The American media and hollywood who have chosen to set Che in the light of a 'benign revolutionary' have relied solely on diaries that he wrote and the memories of his co-thugs. The diaries went through Fidel Castro's propaganda machine and came out the other side with very little reality, and a whole lot of fiction.
And what of the hundreds of survivors and witnesses of this genocidal regime created by Che and Fidel, who mostly live in Florida, having fled the Marxist-Communist nation? They have been ignored in favor of this sanitized version of reality approved by Cuba's dictator. They stand ready as witnesses to tell their story. Time magazine has never come knocking. Neither did Soderbergh.
Post-script: An estimated 80,000 Cubans have died trying to flee Cuba by boat, rafts, makeshift anythings that might get them to the shores of the United States of America. They've died by drowning, sharks and exposure.

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