The veneration for Che is so high in Cuba, that every October 8 in all primary schools in that island nation, first grade children receive a blue scarf from their parents, which identifies them as “pioneers.” Thus, the next step is to “be like Che.”
The newspaper Gramma, the official broadcasting organ of the Communist Party of Cuba, the only political group allowed on the island, assures that “the youngest (…) from the tenderness of their six years begin to follow the example of man”, whom they identify as someone “admired and loved” in Latin America ”.
The real Che
An image of the Cuban photographer Alberto Korda, taken in 1960, which has been printed around the world on T-shirts, posters, glasses, key rings and other items that are sold as souvenirs shows the face of Ernesto Guevara, with a beret and an actor’s pose. as the symbol that they have made and that alludes to a revolutionary who fought for freedom.
However, in these days of quarantine in the face of the advance of the coronavirus pandemic, another Photography that circulates on social networks shows the true facet of Che Guevara, the doctor by profession who found in the reckless idea of Fidel Castro, the breeding ground to vent his potential for sadism and criminality.
Photography is not new. It is by Andrew López, made for United Press International and won a Pulitzer Prize in 1960. The portrait, in black and white, reflects the moment when a religious talks to a man on his knees, before being shot on command of Che.
In the reference photo, a man who had belonged to General Fulgencio Batista’s army, who was in charge of Cuba until 1959 and was deposed by Castro and the guerrillas who joined him to take control of the island, received the acquittal of a representative of the Church, while armed men waited to take him to the firing squad. One of the soldiers laughed, another seemed eager to proceed with the execution.
López’s photograph has come to light again on social networks and one among those who have shared it these days is the account identified as Turn on Fasha, and Twitter.
Ernesto Guevara is credited with the responsibility of hundreds of executions in the fortress of La Cabaña, the site in Havana that Fidel Castro chose as a prison for those who had integrated the army and the Batista Police. Seventy-nine of those crimes would be documented and occurred between January and November 1959.
The one that Fidel Castro also called “capable and brave chief,” “distinguished combatant,” “distinguished doctor,” and “the most extraordinary of our comrades in the revolution,” was the executioner of the military fortress, where Batista’s men were first executed. and then anti-Castro opponents, convicted in summary trials, without any kind of procedural guarantees.
Che was known as a cold and calculating guerrilla who imposed a model of conduct in trials, in which militant zeal should prevail over the legal order, with prefabricated sentences that he himself reviewed and approved.
When he was in the Sierra Maestra, the place where the coup against Batista was forged, one of Che’s maxims was “when in doubt, kill.” Later, already empowered and displaying cruel irony, he sent more than one person to the wall, writing: “Give him aspirin.”
Over time, the regime Castro stopped using rifles against the people and gave way to other tools such as surveillance and indoctrination, in addition to controlling food as a mechanism to keep Cubans decimated.
Che’s image and his ideas are still valid in every corner of Cuba. Parents cannot oppose the regime’s indoctrination, as it is considered a crime and they can face penalties of up to three years in prison. Last year, a couple of Cuban shepherds ended up in prison for trying to educate their children at home.
The texts that are assigned to children in schools present those who continue to hold power as the “heroes of the revolution.” It is not strange that a student is given the task of painting Che’s cap or Fidel Castro’s olive green uniform.
The little ones are also obliged to attend public events, where they must carry banners and shout harangues alluding to the slogans of the regime. Nor is it unusual for them to be taken to the houses of opponents to participate in so-called acts of repudiation, where those who disagree are verbally assaulted and provoked with attacks and outrages on their homes.
For all this, the photograph of the man on his knees who preferred to lose his life and not give in to his principles in the face of the Castro revolution, continues to be a call to the world to make known the criminal spirit of Che, whom the radical left has deified and takes as a guide to indoctrinate and impose false ideals.
Meanwhile, freedom-loving Cubans continue to yearn for the democracy promoted by the apostle José Martí to arrive as soon as possible on the island, since they do not want their children to be like Che.