Che- Part One – The Argentine

    Che: Part One takes place a few years after The Motorcycle Diaries in the life of Ernesto “Che” Guevara.  Che is transformed from an ambitious traveler and medicial student from The Motorcycle Diaries to a revolutionary leader followed by many in Che: Part One.  Part of the film is the story Che and his followers traveling and fighting for the revolutionary cause, and the other part is him being interviewed by Lisa Howard.  During this interview, Howard asked Che some tough questions from revolutionary movement to his relationship with Castro.  He is depicted as a influential leader as well as a tough, no nonsense boss on a mission in Che: Part One.  This depiction is completely different from the one shown in The Motorcycle Diaries.  Che completely transformed his entire motivation and purpose for his life in Part One of Che’s story.    

    One question that arose during the discussion after the movie was about Che and being a guerrilla leader; was he as guilty as the other revolutaries for the killings that took place even though he didn’t actually commit them, he just ordered them?  In a very descriptive article by Che Guevara entitled “Guerrilla warfare: A method”, he lays out the foundation for guerrilla warfare and why he feels it is necessary. 

This article will express our views on guerrilla warfare and its correct utilization. Above all, we must emphasize at the outset that this form of struggle is a means to an end. That end, essential and inevitable for any revolutionary, is the conquest of political power. In the analysis of specific situations in different countries of America, we must therefore use the concept of guerrilla warfare in the limited sense of a method of struggle in order to gain that end.” 

       The article is detailed oriented about why guerrilla warfare is essential is achieving the revolutionary goals.  Even though Che wasn’t involved with the actual killings of people, especially Cubans, it seems that he is just as much at fault as the ones who did kill.  After reading the article, it is clear he understands the impact it has and what guerrilla warfare involves.  He was very passionate about protecting the Cuban people, yet, he wasn’t hesitant to have Cubans killed for his cause.  It seems that in the beginning of his discovery of revolutionary career, he was truly passionate about his cause.  In the end, he might have let the power get to his head and his goals became more of an obsession.

As Fidel has said, the cordillera of the Andes will be the Sierra Maestra of Latin America; and the immense territories this continent encompasses will become the scene of a life or death struggle against imperialism. We cannot predict when this struggle will reach a continental dimension or how long it will last. But we can predict its advent and triumph because it is the inevitable result of historical, economic and political conditions; and its direction cannot change.

        Guevara was not only responsible for the revoluntary movement in Cuba, but in Mexico as well.  In an article entitled “Between Bohemianism and a Revolutionary Rebirth” by Eric Zolov, he describes Che during his time in Mexico.  He states, “Guevara seemed more concerned with escape from the trappings of married life with his new wife, and the sudden advent of fatherhood, both of which he appeared to have stumbled into somewhat haphazardly, than with any engagement with Mexican leftwing politics per se” (Zolov, 246).  Che was obviously ready to take on a challenge like the one presented to him in Mexico.  Zolov discusses how Che installed the drive into the youth of Mexico to bring back to life the Mexican Revolution because it “is dead-and has been for awhile, without is realizing’ said Guevara” (Zolov, 248).  “By the early 1960s this debate had formed the core of an impassioned “New Left’ movement led by student groups and a younger generation of intellectuals determined to push the Mexican revolution back to its founding principals of land redistribution, social welfare, and economic nationalism” (Zolov, 248).  Numberous people rallied around Che and the movement.  Even today, Che is a huge influnential figure with the Mexican youth  because of his actions.  This revolution wasn’t without controversay, of course.  Still, Guevara is a household name. ”Today in Mexico Guevara is enjoying renewed vitality as a symbol of defiance to neoliberalism and the U.S. war in Iraq and of solidarity with movements of resistance globally.  This holds true no doubt across the Americas, and perhaps it derives as much from the commodification of Che as from his continued resonance as a figure of Latin American ’purity’” (Zolov, 274). 

    Even though Che was and still is a controversial revolutionary leader, he is undoublty one of the most symbolic and recognized people of revolution movements.  “Che remains for many Mexican youth, as well as for those of the generation of 1968, a symbol of international solidarity and anti-imperialist struggle-an irreverent revolutionary who overcame his bohemianism while never repudiating his wanderlust spirit” (Zolov, 275).  The death of Ernesto “Che” Guevara is still a controversay to many, but his impact, drive, and passion was definietly not understated or uninfluential to hundreds of thousands of people now and then.