Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Che Guevara's Three One Dimensions

Che Guevara ranks up there as one of the most one-dimensional figures in Latin American political history. Most recently Ileana Ros-Lehtinen breathed fire when UNESCO accepted a collection of Che documents from Cuba and Bolivia. The mere idea of studying him sets her off because he is a "bloodthirsty murderous sadist."

With that as a jumping off point, here are the three one dimensions, so to speak, all of them missing critical facts.

First, Che Guevara is the embodiment of evil. 

This is widely held by the opposition to the Castro regime in the United States. He has no redeeming qualities because he hated people. He did not fight for beliefs but rather only for the sheer enjoyment of killing and oppressing people. He's like the creepy guy with the cattle gun in No Country For Old Men.

Second, Che Guevara is the embodiment of revolutionary good. 

Many in the Latin American left has long held this view. He is a light of inspiration for us all, a model for every child to follow. Hugo Chávez talked about him until the very end. He helped the oppressed as much as possible, and even when resting--which was rare--he looked lovingly at pictures of the oppressed.

Third, Che Guevara is the embodiment of ersatz bourgeois rebellion. 

The sight of teenagers buying Che Guevara t-shirts in malls never fails to amaze me. But his picture is cute, he looks so inspiring, and this makes me feel like I am giving a signal to my parents and my school that I am a rebel. There's no way he would've let his mom take away his Xbox for staying out too late!


KevinJ 8:22 PM  

It's almost impossible these days to study any portion of the Left and not be called a commie.

Scott Tuttle 4:04 PM  

Che Guevara is a very fascinating figure because so many of the things he said contradicted the things he did and because there are so many conflicting accounts of his life that it's impossible to find who the real Che Guevara really was.

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