Thursday, 9 October 2014

Che: A Memoir –by Fidel Castro

Che: A Memoir –by Fidel Castro, edited by David Deutschmann, Preface by Jesus Montane, National Book Agency, Calcautte, first Indian ed. 1994 , original ocean Press Melbourne, price Rs. 100/ Pages 168
   This is the book, which I have read for second time, but it was worth reading again. These days I am trying to make regular reading on Cuba, Venezuela and the Caribbean in general. In the beginning life sketches of both Che Guevara and Fidel Castro are given, then Che’s life’s Chronology is given. Later preface by Jesus Montane Oropesa is given and then David Deutschmann’s introduction is given. Then in seven chapters Castro’s writings or lectures relating to Che Guevara are put up together and after Post script, Glossary of persons and events is given.
                            Castro’s speeches start with sharing with Che Guevara’s farewell letter written to him by Che before proceeding to start revolution in Africa and Latin America. As Che was not seen in Havana, all kinds of rumours and scandals were spread by bourgeoisie media and Castro made the letter public only when Che Guevara reached Bolivia in 1966 to make revolution and get his life sacrificed in 1967. Second speech was made by Castro on Cuban television on 15th October 1967 to announce the death of Com. Che and third chapter includes his speech in front of one million people in Revolutionary Plaza Havana in memorial meeting for Che. Chapter four includes Castro’s introduction to Bolivian Dairies of Che, which were published in 1968, after these were recovered from Bolivia after Che’s killing at the hands of US mercenaries Bolivian army. Chapter five includes Castro’s speech in Chile, where the first statue of Che Guevara was inaugurated by castro, it was his inaugural speech. Chapter six is Castro’s interview with Italian journalist Gianni Mina on the occasion of 20th anniversary of Che’s martyrdom in 1987 and seventh and last chapter includes Castro’s speech on that occasion at Electronic factory named after Ernesto Che Guevara at city of Pinar del Rio.
   If i have to take notes of this book, I may have to copy almost half of the book, suffice to say that very important book to understand both Che and Fidel. I can say that I understand both better with the reading of this book. It confirms my earlier conviction that Che and Bhagat Singh have lot much in common, which have been aptly described by Castro in context of Che, but which description is largely applicable to the personality of Bhagat singh.

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