Hasta la Victoria Siempre Revisited

My fellow revolutionaries, internationalists, and travelers on the road to social justice,

I’m writing this letter to praise the legacy of a great man, and to remind you of how much we owe to his selfless efforts.  A phrase is etched into his monument and mausoleum in Santa Clara, Cuba beneath his towering, south facing sculpture.  He signed all personal correspondence with those same immortal words:  “Hasta la Victoria Siempre”.  Until Victory, Always.

Dr. Ernesto “Che” Guevara de la Serna, the consummate, quintessential revolutionary.  The man who bravely fought and fearlessly died attempting to precipitate a world-wide revolution against the formidable forces of neo-colonialism and imperialism.  Che!  His quest was carried out in the name of love, but he never hesitated to execute anyone who stood in his way.  Revered by the masses of poor and downtrodden, reviled by those whose fortunes depend  upon the existence and continued malignant growth of the voracious cancer of capitalism.

Che!  Jean-Paul Sarte once called him “the most complete human being of our age.”  Cuban school children recite every morning:  “We will be like Che.”

Along with Fidel and Raul Castro, Che was largely responsible for the highly unlikely success of The Cuban Revolution in 1959.  But unable to bask in the glory of victory for long, he was off on a quest to foment and fight a world-wide revolution.  After first failing in the Congo, he moved on to more familiar territory in Bolivia.  Things did not go well in the Bolivian jungle, and all too soon the C.I.A. was hot on his trail.  In a bloody battle, the man who dared to challenge the status quo and fight for social justice was wounded and captured by the Bolivian Military.

Told of his imminent demise by a C.I.A. agent, Che later taunted his assassin. “Shoot coward. You are only going to kill a man.” And on October 9th, 1967, Che was dead at the age of 39.  His hands were sawn off for positive identification, and his body quickly disappeared into an unmarked and secret grave. It would be 30 years before his remains were found and returned to Cuba.  When his death was confirmed, a million people gathered for his wake in Plaza de la Revolucion, Havana.  There Fidel Castro announced a new Cuban holiday, commemorating the last battle of Che Guevara. October 8th would forever be known as “The Day of the Heroic Guerilla”.

And so, my fellow revolutionaries, with The Day of the Heroic Guerilla on the near horizon, it is my suggestion that we take some time to reflect upon our own personal battles against neo-colonialism and imperialism.  How do we stack up to the most complete human being of our age?  What are we doing to create a better world?  What more can we do?

If you and I are of like mindsets, you fear for the future of your grandchildren.  But you and I are little people.  The wealth of the world and its future are controlled by a select few.  The scales are tipped, and not in our favor.  What, if anything, can we do to reduce the deadly toxic footprint of the military-industrial complex?  What can we do to end the imbalance of obscene sociopathic avarice at the top of the economic ladder and abject hopeless poverty on the bottom?  What can we do to counter the philosophy of profit above all else, the fouling of the planet, and resulting catastrophic climate change?  I don’t know about you, but I’ve grown somewhat attached to my hands and my heartbeat.

However, fears for our own safety and well being should be put aside.  If Cuban children can be like Che, we can too.  My first thought is that we gather together in Mexico City and plan to take Che’s dream of a world-wide social revolution to the U.S.A.  Only 82 men pulled off the Cuban Revolution, so I’m suggesting we’ll need at least 83 strong young bodies for our mission.  We’ll plan and train for a couple years, accumulate a cache of firearms and learn how to use them, climb Popocapetl a few times to get into shape, and take the revolution to the belly of the beast.  We’ll start at the west coast, hide out in the forests of California, and…oh, wait…they’ve all burned down thanks to climate change.  Okay, we’ll start in the Midwest, hide out in the cornfields of Iowa and Nebraska, and…oh, wait…I can imagine dying heroically like Che, but don’t want to be poisoned to death by Monsanto’s Glyphosate.  All right then, we’ll take to the streets of American cities where the people will see our firearms, hear our song of freedom and justice, and treat us as liberators.  But wait…there are as many guns in the U.S.A. as there are people.  Over three hundred million.  We’ll be squashed like bugs.

Come to think of it, all of Che’s dreams are coming true even without our help.  His failure and untimely assassination in Bolivia was seen as a great blow to his plan for bringing socialism to the downtrodden U.S. vassal states of South America or “Our America” as he referred to it.  But what was at first perceived as failure turned out to be the inspiration for a Latin American awakening.  There have been many setbacks, but most of the lands to the south now have very strong socialist leanings.  The U.S. Military is now welcome in only a handful of countries.  Outside of Columbia and Paraguay, a Bolivarian Revolution is gradually bringing equality and justice to countries which were once no more than U.S. colonies.  Bribery, coup d’etat, assassination, and theft of resources, all routinely carried out by the C.I.A. in the past, are no longer tolerated.

Che dreamed of the union of China and Russia which would challenge the scourge of imperialism.  Until recently the two sleeping giants tended to go their separate ways, but now they’re acting like long lost brothers in arms.  Together with India, Brazil, South Africa, and scores of other countries lining up to come aboard, they’ve formed the BRICS alliance, and now threaten American hegemony and the existence of the American Dollar as official world currency.

Familiarizing himself with the works of Karl Marx at an early age, Che knew well that capitalism contains the seeds of its own destruction.  He understood that, left to its own devices, capitalism would eventually enter the last dying stages in which it flounders today.  Because he believed that the final days of the world revolution would be fought in the streets of the U.S.A. he’d probably be surprised at how quickly the system is imploding without outside assistance.  American capitalism now feeds upon those who once sustained it.  Jobs which once supported a thriving middle class have been exported to vassal states and to prisons where labor costs are next to nothing.  The poorest Americans now sleep in parks and on bus stop benches, scraping by with whatever they can scrounge or steal.  The wealthiest Americans avoid taxation and hide their trillions in offshore tax havens.  Elections have become cruel jokes as corporations and their owners buy candidates and make all the decisions.  Infrastructure is collapsing.  Lakes, rivers, aquifers, and streams are polluted.  Agro-chemical poisons have sterilized once fertile soil.  Social programs, public schools, subsidized housing, and hospitals have been defunded. The police-surveillance state watches our every move, and terrorizes the most vulnerable among us.  Fascism is now devouring the land of the free, as its brave citizens rally around racist blowhards like Donald Trump.

So in conclusion, my fellow revolutionaries, it is my humble opinion that the world socialist revolution will not need much help from you and me.  Socialism now grows stronger as capitalism withers and begins a long series of death throes.  In celebration of The Day of the Heroic Guerilla, I’m planning on awakening my wife with a passionate kiss, greeting the sunrise with gratitude for the miracle of my life, drinking a cup of rich, flavorful fair-trade coffee, taking a three mile walk and a half hour swim, calling my loved ones just to hear their voices, having an authentic Mexican lunch at a local restaurant, watching the sunset in the company of my beautiful wife and a bottle of heart-healthy red wine, eagerly anticipating tomorrow.  And before I slip into slumber, I’ll thank whatever gods may be for giving us Che.  When they killed him, they only killed a man.  His dream lives on in you and me.

So if you’re all in agreement, we’ll rethink the Mexico City rendezvous at a later date but only as a contingency plan of last resort.

John R. Hall, having finally realized that no human being in possession of normal perception has a snowball's chance in hell of changing the course of earth's ongoing trophic avalanche, now studies sorcery with the naguals don Juan Matus and don Carlos Castaneda in the second attention. If you're patient, you might just catch him at his new email address, but if his assemblage point happens to be displaced, it could take a while. That address is: drachman2358@outlook.com Read other articles by John R..