Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/962/26128

From The Socialist newspaper, 13 September 2017

Memoir: Che, My Brother

Che Guevara

Che Guevara   (Click to enlarge)

Intimate insight into a revolutionary icon

Scott Jones

Anyone interested in Che Guevara, the Argentinian socialist and hero of the Cuban revolution, is spoilt for choice when looking for books about his life and exploits. But a new book, 'Che, My Brother', written by his sibling in the run-up to the fiftieth anniversary of Che's death, is a welcome addition.

Juan Martin is Ernesto 'Che' Guevara's youngest brother. He was himself a political prisoner for eight years in the late 1970s and early 80s under the reactionary Argentinian junta. Fitting given that Che, before his death, told a fellow fighter he considered Juan Martin, of all his siblings, his spiritual heir.

It was a visit to the tiny village of La Higuera in Bolivia, where Che was executed by US-backed forces in 1967, that prompted Juan Martin to write. It's mainly personal recollections of their youth and the impact of Che's 'legend' on the Guevara family.

The book features some interesting insights into what made Che the revolutionary he would become. The stories Che told his family about poverty and struggle when he returned from the trip around Latin America that became 'The Motorcycle Diaries'.

Struggle

50 years ago Che was in the Bolivian mountains courageously fighting a guerrilla war against the country's military dictatorship. Sadly, his brave efforts were misguided in that they circumvented workers' struggle. They failed to initiate revolution and Che's resulting defeat was to prove fatal.

Despite his self-sacrifice, the methods of guerrilla struggle - which in the specific conditions of Cuba had successfully overthrown capitalism, if not installed genuine workers' democracy - did not have the same effect. But Che's life is rightly an inspiration and his position as an icon of struggle is justified.

The Socialist Party would point to the experience of another great revolutionary, Leon Trotsky, a leader of the Russian revolution a century ago.

Trotsky argued that the working class, even when in a minority, must lead the struggle against capitalism - not isolated bands of guerrillas. Works by Trotsky were found on Che when he was captured and killed.

And what does his brother make of it all? Juan Martin writes: "Do we need someone exactly the same today? A guerrilla? No. A man with a beret living up in the mountains? No.

"But a man with ideas for change, with principles, who won't exchange them for money and fame and power? Someone with Che's characteristics? Yes, we need that.

"The world has not become a better place from when Che was alive. It has become worse. We must fight to make things better." I agree.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 13 September 2017:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Tories retreat on pay cap

"I've been placed in charge of wards without defibrillators"

Rate of black imprisonment worse than US

Tories 'flouting duty' on poison air, says UN


TUC congress 2017

NSSN lobby of the TUC 2017: rank-and-file solidarity to smash the pay cap

TUC congress 2017: time for action on pay


Workplace news and analysis

Union victory at the Bank of England

Bus safety: we won't be distracted from public ownership

CWU members prepare for industrial action at Royal Mail

Barts strike - 'Up the ante' if necessary

McStriker addresses Greenwich trade unionists

Sports Direct's broken promises


Socialist Students

Kick out the Tories, fight for free education!

Interview with leader of students' union in the Spanish state: "When we fight, we win!"

Young Socialists launched in Greater Manchester


International socialist news and analysis

Korean peninsula: is nuclear war likely?


The fight in Labour

Readmit the socialists - for a federal Labour Party


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Thousands march in Bristol - mayor needs real anti-cuts strategy

Boost to Chatsworth NHS campaign


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

Intimate insight into a revolutionary icon

Trotsky's "insightful and frank examination" of revolution out soon

The Socialist inbox

New documentary asks women how their bodies are sexualised and policed


 

Home   |   The Socialist 13 September 2017   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Che Guevara:

triangleChe Guevara 50 years on - revolutionary socialist and fighter

triangleFight for workers' democracy in Cuba

triangleCuba at a crossroads

triangleLondon Socialist Party: Gaza, war and imperialism

Revolution:

triangleCaerphilly Socialist Party: Women and Revolution

triangleMass rally to commemorate 1917 Russian Revolution

triangleSpain: Madrid rally celebrates October revolution

triangleWelsh update of Chekhov an engrossing tale of 1980s class conflict

Bolivia:

triangleCWI Latin America school: A continent on the brink

Cuba:

triangleNew musical on life of Castro

Reviews and comments

Reviews and comments

15/11/17

The Socialist

The Socialist Inbox

15/11/17

Abortion

TV review: Abortion on Trial - hard-hitting look at impact of 1967 act

15/11/17

Vietnam war

Comprehensive account of bloody conflict

8/11/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

8/11/17

Obituary

Obituary: Paul Randall, 1959-2017

8/11/17

Theatre

Welsh update of Chekhov an engrossing tale of 1980s class conflict

1/11/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

25/10/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

25/10/17

Fidel Castro

New musical on life of Castro

25/10/17

Film

Film - Dennis Skinner: Nature of the Beast

25/10/17

Russian revolution

Well-deserved ridicule of Stalinism is impressive, funny but flawed

18/10/17

Port Talbot

Powerful picture of the Port Talbot steel workers' struggle

18/10/17

Russian revolution

October 1917 reviews: 'More bright than any heaven'

11/10/17

Theresa May

Theresa May, Frida Kahlo and turning women into wares

11/10/17

Docks

Poverty, repression and fightback on the docks

triangleMore Reviews and comments articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle15 Nov March for free education! We demand a future!

triangle15 Nov Tories on the brink - kick them out!

Socialism 2017

triangle14 Nov Socialism 2017: Organising to fight back

triangle13 Nov Strike wave continues with 49 walkout days by housing workers

triangle10 Nov US: Historic vote for Ginger Jentzen campaign in Minneapolis

triangle10 Nov Strikers picket the South Western Railway network

triangle10 Nov Europe in crisis, revolutionary winds in Catalonia

More ...

triangle20 Nov Birmingham Central Socialist Party: How can socialists support upcoming strikes?

triangle21 Nov Cardiff Socialist Students: Socialism and the struggle for LGBT rights

triangle21 Nov Birmingham South East Socialist Party: NHS in Meltdown - What can be done?

triangle21 Nov Sheffield North Socialist Party: The causes of capitalist crisis

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2