Che, Part 1

              Ernesto Guevara has been the focus of our class for the last two weeks. We have seen his character grow from a youthful traveler to a radical revolutionary. Some of his character transition can be attributed to worldly issues occurring at the time. After the Second World War, South America’s economic and political identity became more defined. Due to an increase in guaranteed foreign trade, Mexico and the rest of South America gained much needed revenue increase. President of Mexico, Miguel Alemán was committed to capitalistic expansion and creating closer ties with the United States. Along with Mexico, Guatemala and Argentina experienced an increase in foreign capital investment. However, with an increase in capital comes an increase in greed, and an ensuing war broke out through out South America.

            There is a time gap between the Ernesto Guevara we see in Motorcycle Diaries and the man we see in Che. According to Jorge Castańeda who wrote a biography of Che, he states that Guevara was a “wandering photographer, underpaid medical researcher, a man in permanent exile, and an insignificant husband.” His time away from his family in Mexico was the final staging in creating the revolutionary duo of “Che and Fidel”, a team that would forever reshape the political identity of South America. 
            The movie Che introduces Guevara in his intense recruiting and training of his soldiers in guerrilla warfare. He is portrayed as a strong and pragmatic leader. His revolutionaries are completely under his command, they must adhere to his policies or they are ordered to return home or be executed. Guevara is a military genius in this type of warfare. In his, Guerrilla warfare: A method, he explains the guerrilla is the vanguard of the people, and for them to be successful they must have the support of the local peasants and workers. In the movie, three guerrillas wander away from Che’s group and harass a local family. Once they are found they are executed as examples to the rest of the soldiers; this sort of action is not tolerated under Guevara’s rule. From these examples, Che is able to maintain discipline in his regimes allowing his soldiers to function as a whole and under the command of their leader Che Guevara.
            The end of the movie we see victory for Che and the revolutionaries. In the victory scene a guerrilla asks Che what they are suppose to do now, and Che says they will make their way to Havana a city that until then they could not control. With Fidel Castro in power, they worked to create a better sense of social nationalism for Cuba. The revolution’s success is rightfully credited to Ernesto Guevara, and until his execution by Bolivian soldiers, he was the image of revolution and a more prosperous future to the many youth in South America.