Saturday, October 27, 2007

Fallen Soldiers Fridays: Che Guevara

Every Friday I will post a biography of an honored hero in the revolutionary struggle. Some will be well-known freedom fighters like Malcolm X or Mao Tse Tsung, others, so not well known. Because not all believed in the same strategy to achieve liberation, we will see a conflict of ideas. Something that we can draw upon to construct our views today.




Guevara, Che (1928-1967)

Argentinian doctor; joined Castro in Mexico in 1954; a leader of the 1956-59 Cuban Revolution. Che served as president of Cuba's national bank and as Cuba's minister of industry in the period immediately following the Cuban Revolution.

Towards the end of his formal affiliation with the Cuban government, Che came to implicitly criticize Soviet bureacracy. His positions put him at odds with the party line of the Cuban CP. In 1965, Che realized that the defence of the Cuban revolution and the creation of revolutions abroad were naturally not always in sync, and this ultimately led to his resignation and his return to revolutionary work abroad.

During Che's subsequent revolutionary campaigns, he wrote his Message to the Tricontinental (1967) in which he openly criticized the Soviet Union; claiming that the Northern hemisphere of the world, both the Soviet Union and the US, exploited the Southern hemisphere of the world. He strongly supported the Vietnamese Revolution, and urged his comrades in South America to create "many vietnams".

In 1965 Che left Cuba to set up guerrilla forces first in the Congo and then later in Bolivia, where he was ultimately captured and killed in October 1967. Accounts of his execution have varied over the years, but many contemprary accounts indicate some degree of collaboration between Bolivia's government troops and the United States CIA.

Guevara developed a theory of primacy of military struggle, in particular concept of guerilla foquismo. Many of Che's theories regarding guerilla tactics are articulated in his 1961 work "Guerilla Warfare."

Further Reading: Che Guevara Archive

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