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During his Bolivian “guerrilla” campaign, Che split his forces, and his men became separated from one another. Hopelessly lost, the soldiers bumbled around, half-starved, half-clothed, and half-shod, without any contact with each other for 6 months before being wiped out. They didn’t even have WWII-vintage walkie-talkies to communicate with, and they seemed incapable of using a compass and a map. The men spent much of the time walking in circles and were usually within a mile of each other. During this blundering, they often engaged in ferocious firefights against each other.
“You hate to laugh at anything associated with Che, who murdered so many defenseless men and boys,” says Felix Rodriguez, a Cuban-American CIA officer who played a key role in tracking him down in Bolivia. “But when it comes to Che as ‘guerrilla’ you simply can’t help but guffaw.”
Che’s genocidal fantasies included a continental reign of Stalinism. To achieve this ideal, he craved “millions of atomic victims” — most of them, Americans. “The U.S. is the great enemy of mankind!” raved Guevara in 1961. He continued:
Against those hyenas there is no option but extermination. We will bring the war to the imperialist enemies’ very home, to his places of work and recreation. The imperialist enemy must feel like a hunted animal wherever he moves. Thus we’ll destroy him! We must keep our hatred against them [the U.S.] alive and fan it to paroxysms!
This was Che’s prescription for America almost half a century before Osama bin Laden appeared on our radar screens.
For many, the questions remains: how did such an incurable sadist and incompetent idiot attain such iconic stardom?
The answer is that the psychotic Guevara had the magnificent fortune of linking up with modern history’s top press agent, Fidel Castro. Castro always had American reporters anxiously scurrying to his every beck and call — including The New York Times’ Herbert Matthews, CBS’s Ed Murrow and Dan Rather, ABC’s Barbara Walters, and, most recently, the Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg.
Had Guevara not encountered Raul and Fidel Castro in Mexico City in the summer of 1955 — had he not encountered Cuban exile Nico Lopez in Guatemala the year before (who later introduced him to Raul and Fidel Castro in Mexico City) — all evidence suggests che would have continued his life as a traveling hobo: panhandling, mooching off women, staying in flophouses, and scribbling unreadable poetry.
Che’s image is particularly ubiquitous on college campuses, but for the wrong reasons. He belongs in the marketing and advertising departments. His lessons and history are fascinating and valuable, but only as a curiosity. On October 8, 1967, Che pathetically whimpered, “Don’t shoot!” I’m Che!” I’m worth more to you alive than dead!” while dropping his fully-loaded weapons when two Bolivian soldiers approached him. This is what Che ought to be remembered as: a cowardly, murdering scoundrel who would only raise a weapon in the name of revolution if his victim were as defenseless as wounded quarry.
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