Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Why Che Guevara is a Monster


Che in 59, originally uploaded by ddbsweasel.

Che died relatively young, and lived violently. His was a world of ideals. He embraced Communism, having been raised a socialist by well to do parents. It is his adult life which earns him the description of 'monster'.

The places where Che had most influence are in poverty, suffering deadly strife which threatens to engulf the regions they inhabit. This wasn't Che's intention, having a goal and a method of prosecution to that goal. Che's goal might be inferred by the poetry he is said to have enjoyed, like that of Pablo Neruda. It is an idealistic world, without social inequality which leads to injustice. To achieve that goal, Che employed brutal injustice.



Soon after Cuba was overthrown by Fidel Castro, Che was given responsibility in government.

"He was appointed commander of the La Cabaña Fortress prison, and during his five-month tenure in that post (January 2 through June 12, 1959), he oversaw the trial and execution of many people, among whom were former Batista regime officials and members of the "Bureau for the Repression of Communist Activities" (BRAC), a unit of the secret police known by its Spanish acronym. José Vilasuso, an attorney who worked under Guevara at La Cabaña preparing indictments, said that these were lawless proceedings where "the facts were judged without any consideration to general juridical principles" and the findings were pre-determined by Guevara. It is estimated that between 156 and 550 people were executed on Guevara's extra-judicial orders during this time."
from wikipedia

Che killed for his cause, and it is apparent he wanted to die, such that at several times, his colleagues worked hard to convince him not to die for one cause or another. When he died, he still had those handsome, youthful features.

People still revere Che. People denounce decent people for being monsters. Che deserves the epithet. The short documentary The Weasel is making will show Che, The Monster.


===
Compiled episodes part A
Compiled episodes part B

27 comments:

The Weasel said...

Ernesto Guevara de la Serna (June 14, 1928[1] – October 9, 1967), commonly known as Che Guevara, El Che or just Che was an Argentine-born Marxist revolutionary, political figure, and leader of Cuban and internationalist guerrillas.

But that is not how I know of Che. The Che I know, I know only from pictures. A rather handsome South American man who was a monster. Today, few people discuss the monstrous activities of Che Guevvarra, and I would like to share with you what some of the things were that people ignore when they praise Che.

As a young man studying medicine, Guevara travelled rough throughout South America, bringing him into direct contact with the impoverished conditions in which many people lived. His experiences and observations during these trips led him to the conclusion that the region's socio-economic inequalities could only be remedied by socialism through revolution, prompting him to intensify his study of Marxism and travel to Guatemala to learn about the reforms being implemented there by President Jacobo Arbenz Guzmán.
While in Mexico in 1956, Guevara joined Fidel Castro's revolutionary 26th of July Movement, which seized power from the regime of the dictator[2] General Fulgencio Batista in Cuba in 1959. In the months after the success of the revolution, Guevara was assigned the role of "supreme prosecutor", overseeing the public show trials and executions of hundreds of military and civilian leaders associated with the previous regime.[3][4] After serving in various important posts in the new government and writing a number of articles and books on the theory and practice of guerrilla warfare, Guevara left Cuba in 1965 with the intention of fomenting revolutions first in Congo-Kinshasa, and then in Bolivia, where he was captured in a military operation supported by the CIA and the U.S. Army Special Forces.[5] Guevara was summarily executed by the Bolivian Army in the town of La Higuera near Vallegrande on October 9, 1967.[6][7]
After his death, Guevara became an icon of socialist revolutionary movements and a cultural icon worldwide. An Alberto Korda photo of him has received wide distribution and modification, appearing on t-shirts, protest banners, and in many other formats. The Maryland Institute College of Art called this picture "the most famous photograph in the world and a symbol of the 20th century."

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this.
Yes, that picture.... unbelievable how it became an icon for so many of us, without knowing anything about what had gone on before. Food for thought, indeed.

from feenix

Anonymous said...

Nice one Dave. Very informative and enjoyable to watch. Really good narration too. Thanks for sharing, keep em' coming. All the best to you, - Dave.

The Weasel said...

Quite accurate description and great pictures.
Hero? Monster? As usual, it all depends on what side are you on.
B

Anonymous said...

Dr Jekill or Mr Che ... Who has the answer ???

Great video, David.

- LaFayette

Anonymous said...

An interesting historical treat. I'm not fond of political leaders, when they try to persue their aims with force, violence and military power. Peace, David!
from dirigent

Anonymous said...

Isn't it funny how things and what things become icons of the world. Well Done DD your narrations sounds good I'm a sucker for Australian and Brit accents though. Hehe Perhaps a part 2 is in order...

from letileti

The Weasel said...

Thank you folks. This is the first of a series on the issue. already, I have this comment on youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYWyEgMVMUo
"Ohh wow!! He executed many people such a big criticism by you!!?? There is nothing you can say to change people minds because regardless of your words and efforts to make him look like a monster you will never see him the way most of us do!! You! a white man who can careless and who can know less about the situation of South America have no right to call him a monster! And if he was a Monster.. thank God for Monsters like him who give us hope for a better future for our countries.."
===
I replied
"This is part 1 of a series. Putting aside the allegation of state sanctioned killing of innocents, The guerrilla activity involved some pretty terrible things which has left every single nation he had significant involvement with in poverty. Nothing to do with my skin color, but I'm sorry you can't see past that."
===
I will attempt, in the series, to hold a bar at the same height with which it is held for people like Augusto Pinochet, which I believe to be far higher than that held for Castro, Guzman, Victor Torre, Nico Lopez, Ahmed Ben Bella, Patrice Lamumba, Victor Dreke, Laurent Kabila, and so on.

Anonymous said...

Superb narration and reveilling the true nature of an icon. For the common people he was and is still a hero... Thanx for the info on this wonderful vid David.
from eagle 1

Anonymous said...

So often we romanticize historical figures for our own purposes. Che isn't the only one. Regardless of political leanings, it is healthy to question and re-examine the character and actions of our leaders. Nice piece dd.
from frozen entropy

The Weasel said...

I think the main thesis will be more distant in part 2 and 3, but when I get to the overthrow of Cuba the actions should be seen in sharp relief. thank you FE

Anonymous said...

Nice work Dave. Excellent narration. Love that accent. reggie

Anonymous said...

GREAT VIDEO DD!!!!!
Da Vero Artista!!!

Ramzar

Anonymous said...

I could not disagree more with your opinion. Actually I find it quite offencive.

Che' is and will always be HERO!

It's like you only read one book or just the CIA slant to the real story of struggle. In any case your wrong. How old were you when Che' was murdered by the CIA? In 1953 I was watching all this on TV. I served America in Vietnam on a river patrol boat. After that experiance, I learned my own US government was packed with cover-ups, covert murders, and just bald face lies were fed to the american public.

I found it is not the battle of good overr evil..... It's all a covert gray fog.

My suggestion is take a breath and open your closed mindedness and take a good long look at how america's greed and so called entitlement has screwd the third world.

My Hero Che' worked for the peons, the little man.

Geo/FatChance

Anonymous said...

hmmm, you touch a very sensitive key here, dd. as it always happens with history, one could find thousands of evidence supporting one thesis or the opposite one, depending on the side they come from... i don't usually like heroes in general, agreeing to what somebody once said: poor is the country that needs heroes... but to understand who or what a man really has been it's a question i consider the most difficult to answer to...

mir

Anonymous said...

A brave piece DD and well done, I think. But there does seem to be a semi-ironic hero-worship issue happening with Che. I never did quite get that. I mean, all good journalism has its biases, but I think you've been pretty fair in your assessment here. I happen to think Karl Marx was a brilliant political thinker, but that his ideas have surely been co-opted by tyrants and revolutionaries in order to substantiate some fairly reprehensible real-world actions. Ideals seem to become quite perverted by radical regimes and incapable leadership. Cuba is a mess, last time I heard. When we thrust whole nations into these ideological crunches, some very radical regimes arise, and it's the very people themselves that always seem to suffer most from these revolutionary upheavals into an alternate economy supported by aggressive isolation. The situation often feels like a Catch 22. Thanks for your report. ~Justin

The Weasel said...

Spot on Justin. Che is a hero for many reasons, but none of them are to do with what he actually did. The media circus, and the 'cult of Che' are related to each other, Castro fed the cult, probably so as to ward of criticism. The media perspective regarding Che changes from the time of his death, to the assumption of the Nixon administration and goes hand in hand with the peace movement, so that Che's death was a non event in '67, but by the 70's it was seen as the death of the ideal of protest movements and illustrative of everything wrong with commercialism.
Also, while I don't think the Marx ideals feasible, I feel them noble. The adage of power corrupting is evident with communism everywhere, but then so it is with commercialism too. The big difference, for mine, is that commercialism encourages wealth while communism seems to condemn all to poverty. My ideology has at its heart the idea that allowing great wealth means that the poor can aspire and achieve.

Anonymous said...

Interesting biography.

heightened

Anonymous said...

Read '1968' by Mark Kurlansky. Interesting insights into the global push for violence and peace; Che was just one of those involved. The whole goddam time was monstrous. However your production and narration was really good. Keep it coming
tomsacold

The Weasel said...

I think you mean this author
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Kurlansky
I'll check it out. Thanks

El Chino said...

An enormous amount of facts to build a case for a "monster" charge. Not much of a deeper psychoanalytical profile. I'm not convinced if the events around him or something deeply inherent in him made him who he became. Didn't anybody ask one of his wifes or children? They should have some answers.

BTW. There are several links between asthma (which he had) and mental illnesses. E.g. from http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/12/01/1070127350267.html :

" ...that people with asthma suffer mental illness at two to four times the rate of the rest of the population..."

But the historical facts seemed good though.

Anonymous said...

Bullshit alert. You're a diabolical asshole. There is no such thing as "monsters". What would an Aussie know about it anyway? Pretentious as usual, no worries.

The Weasel said...

Anonymous .. sadly you leave no substance suggesting why you might be right to believe as you do.

P.Qvist said...

This is kind of off topic, but are you a fan of the freedom of speech? I guess you are. So why did you block me from commenting your videos on youtube? I came with one comment, only one, and a serious and objective one. It was about the CIA involvement in dictatorships. You even answered me, and asked me a question back. Then you blocked me. Isn't it strange to question someone, and then block him, so he can't answer? That seems like a strategy to make me look like a coward... But i guess you are the coward then. or?

David Ball said...

PQvist, I blocked you because you didn't make a comment, but employed a polemic. You assert that Che's activity is acceptable because of CIA activity. In fact there is no justice for what Che did. There is no balance. And your attacking victims by employing polemics and calling them 'comments' or 'questions' is pathetic

P.Qvist said...

That is not quite what I meant. Let me try to formulate my opinion one more time. In the world you live in, there will always be a good and a bad side. In the real world, however, this is never the case. And in this case, I would say that there are two rather bad sides. Unacceptable things happened on both sides.

David Ball said...

Being a Math teacher I enjoy the joke that goes "There are 10 types of people in the world, those that get binary and those that don't." but it is a joke. Good and Evil is a diminution with language artefacts. Good being another word for God and so the demarcation is a religious truth in which Christian dogma would have it that while we are before the day of judgement we will not know for certain who says "lord lord" out of faith, and who cries it out of form.

There is an arbitrariness to the assertion of Good and Evil, or Right and wrong. But there are universal, fundamental truths. We know it is wrong for a state to use its resources to target a private citizen who has committed no crime. Che used socialist forces to make an example of innocent people to let others know they shouldn't think of opposing him or his cause.

The UN accepted that.

CIA fixed it.