A brief history of the movement for workers’ self-management in the 20th and 21st centuries. Examines instances of workers’ control in Yugoslavia, Chile, Bolivia, Peru and contemporary Argentina.
Worker self-management (WSM) has re-emerged as a major movement in Argentina, particularly this year with over 200 factories organized and controlled by their workers and a national co-coordinator of self-managed enterprises in the process of being organized.
Historically, WSM has been the centerpiece of the socialist project, dating back to Karl Marx’s famous statement that the “workers’ emancipation can only be accomplished by the workers themselves”. In that sense, WSM as the road to socialism stands in contrast to the bureaucratic centralism of the former Soviet Union and the hierarchical system of capitalist management. This essay will briefly survey the great potentialities of WSM and then review some historical experiences during the 20th century to point up some historic lessons that are relevant to the current Argentine experience.
Potentialities of WSM
WSM is a truly liberating experience, both in the sense of freeing the working class from capitalist abuse and insecurity and providing them with the freedom to create new forms of social relations of production and distribution. Briefly stated, WSM provides the workers with the decision-making power to:
1) decide what is to be produced and for whom
2) safeguard employment and/or increase employment
3) set priorities in what is produced
4) define the nature of who gets what, where and how
5) combines social production and social appropriation of profit
6) creates solidarity of class at the factory, sectoral or national/international level
7) democratizes the social relations of production.
The Argentine experience with WSM exemplifies some of these potentialities. In Brukmann textile factory and Zanon ceramic factory as well as in the WSM enterprises established by the unemployed workers in Solano and elsewhere, productive and distributive decisions are taken by assembly of all the workers (see Interviews by Mario Hernandez 23-08-02 FSM (La Casona). The high degree of solidarity is evidenced in the popular slogan “an attack on one, is an attack on all (“Tocas uno, Tocas todos”).
Historically, the realization of the potentialities of WSM have encountered both limited successes and failures. It is useful to review some of the major experiences of WSM in different historical contexts.
Historical Cases of WSM: Yugoslavia, Chile, Bolivia, Peru
WSM has taken hold in several countries at different moments and contexts. We will examine four cases: Yugoslavia, Chile, Bolivia and Peru and highlight the strengths and weaknesses.
WSM was the official doctrine of Yugoslav socialist regime between 1950 and the breakup of the Yugoslav Federation. Throughout Yugoslavia all the major factories were under the system of WSM, resulting in greater influence over production and income than anywhere else in the former socialist countries. Free health and education and secure employment was guaranteed by WSM. The WSM movement in Yugoslavia emerged from the defeat of fascism, Yugoslavia’s President Tito’s break with Stalin and the Soviet Union and the socialist revolution. The WSM went through several phases, in the first period 1950-64 it operated at the factory level as the Communist Party controlled national policy; from 1965-1972 under “market reform”, the WSM factories began to be effected by capitalist pressures, resulting in greater social inequalities between factories and economic sectors as well as unemployment; the period between 1973-1990 the encroachment of ethnic chauvinism, IMF pressures and the degeneration of the Yugoslavia Communist Party led to the eventual demise of WSM.
The early success of the WSM in Yugoslav experiment with WSM for over 30 years was due to the mass struggle which preceded WSM during the anti-fascist, anti- Stalinist period 1940-1950, which politicized and mobilized the working class and raised class consciousness and organization. The limitations of Yugoslav WSM was that it was always limited by the fact that the State remained in the hands of the Communist Party which limited the extent of WSM to the local or sectoral level, and thus created a dual system of power between the bureaucratic state and the factory-based WSM movement. When the bureaucracy turned toward the market and later to ethnic politics it undermined the system of WSM.
In Chile, under the Allende government (1970-73) over 125 factories were under some system of WSM. About half mostly controlled by public functionaries, the other fifty percent by commissions of workers in the factories. Studies demonstrated that the factories under WSM were much more productive, efficient and with less absenteeism than state run factories under centralized management. The WSM movement created “cordones industriales” industrial belts which coordinated production and self-defense against capitalist attacks. In the successful factories controlled from below, the party and trade union disputes were subordinated to the power of the popular assemblies in which all workers in the factory participated. WSM defended the factories from closure, protected workers’ employment and vastly improved social conditions or work. Most importantly it raised workers’ political consciousness. Unfortunately, the WSM took place under a parliamentary socialist regime and a capitalist state. WSM created a situation of dual power between the workers’ power embodied in the factories and the cordones and on the other hand the military-bourgeois state apparatus. The Allende Government tried to balance between the two power centers, refusing to arm or to repress the workers. The result was the military coup of 1973 which led to the overthrow of Allende, the destruction of the WSM movement. The lesson was clear: as the success of the WSM advanced and spread throughout the country, the displaced capitalist and landlord class turned toward violence and repression to recapture control over the means of production. The capitalists first attempted to sabotage distribution and production via truckers strikes,then they attempted to block financing and finally they turned to the military and dictatorship. The WSM attempted to pressure Allende to act more decisively in the face of the imminent threat but he was blindly committed to parliamentary procedures and the WSM was defeated. If the WSM in Chile as in Yugoslavia had moved from the factory or sectoral bases of organization to the taking of state power, the workers would have been in a superior position to defend the system of WSM.
The system of worker self-management in Bolivia emerged from the popular revolution of 1952, when an alliance of class conscious miners, peasants and nationalist petty bourgeois overthrew the oligarchical pro-imperialist regime. In the first phase of the revolution, the workers and peasant militias were able to destroy the army, expropriate the mines and realize the redistribution of land. The armed militias of the miners, through their assemblies and unions however, were geographically and politically confined to their mountain strongholds and isolated from the mass of the peasantry, which came under the influence of the nationalist petit bourgeoisie (Nationalist Revolutionary Movement) which gained control of the government and reorganized a bourgeois state. This created a system of dual power which led to intensified conflict in the post-revolutionary period. Throughout the 1950s the Bolivian Workers’ Movement took militant action, general strikes, armed confrontations, to defend the gains of the Revolution, while the MNR bureaucratized the nationalized mines, establishing a State Mining Company, COMIBAL which effectively took control away from the workers while retaining state ownership. In 1964, a military coup led temporarily to the military occupation of the mines. However, a worker-peasant alliance with the progressive military government of J.J. Torres in 1970 led to the re-emergence of popular power in the Popular National Assembly. While the Assembly approved of revolutionary legislation, it did not have state power. A military coup led by General Banzer dissolved the Assembly and effectively destroyed the miners’ militias.
The lessons from the Bolivian experience are that WSM in a single sector (mining) is vulnerable if it does not form alliances with other popular sectors; that a Popular Constituent Assembly without the backing of the state or of popular militia is vulnerable to a coup. The third lesson is that the statification of worker-controlled factories may result in petit-bourgeois technocrats and bureaucrats taking control away from the workers and centralizing it in the state apparatus, and running the public enterprise like a capitalist firm.
Peru: The Revolution From Above
In 1967 a group of progressive nationalist military officers led by General Velasco Alvarez took power. The new regime expropriated a large number of mines, factories and plantations and established two types of innovations: industrial cooperatives and industrial communities. Industrial cooperatives were based on management-workers participation and led to significant growth of productivity and socio-economic benefits, but eventually management took over the policymaking and marginalized or co-opted the worker representatives. The industrial communities were supposedly a form of co-participation between military officials, and workers, but de facto, the military officials retained the centralized control of the previous capitalist ownership as well as the salary differentials. As workers realized that co-operatives and industrial communities organized from above would not operate in their interests, they organized to democratize them and to secure greater control and equity, frequently resorting to strikes against their own enterprises. Eventually, under neo-liberal rulers, the factories and plantations were re-privatized and the progressive labor legislation under Velasco was abrogated. The lesson from Peru is that statification or nationalization from above reproduces the hierarchical structure of capitalism and marginalizes the role of the workers in the public sector. The social gains achieved by the workers in the struggle are then reduced by the bureaucrats in charge, who operate with capitalist criteria. Corruption and mismanagement by the bureaucrats and the lack of workers’ control leads to de-nationalization and privatization.
The Historical Experiences and Argentina
Several important lessons of past experiences with WSM are relevant to Argentina’s growing number of worker-managed factories.
1) The success of past worker-managed factories was based on horizontal structures based on popular assemblies. The successful operations in Chile and Yugoslavia were based on workers’ councils and factory assemblies.
2) The success in one sector, mining in Bolivia, manufacturing in Chile depended on extending the WSM to other sectors and alliances with other classes, a phenomena that the worker vanguards failed to consummate.
3) Local victories and dual power heightened class consciousness and improved working conditions, but also provoked violent reaction from the ruling classes. The failure of the WSM in Bolivia and Chile to move from local power to state power led to bourgeoisie repression via military coups: counter power or dual power is an unstable and temporary situation, which inevitably is resolved by the question of state power.
4) The context for the growth of WSM movements varies from country to country and under specific conditions. In Yugoslavia, WSM began with the workers’ anti-fascist war, and culminated in the massive occupation of factories under the Yugoslav Communist Party. In Chile, WSM was a result of both government policy and direct intervention of workers to prevent capitalist lockouts and sabotage. In Bolivia, WSM grew out of a popular anti-oligarchical insurrection. Only in Yugoslavia did WSM consolidate power over 3 decades, and that is largely because the state power was in the hands of a non-Stalinist Communist Party. WSM, in order to consolidate and operate needs to move from the local to the national, from the factory to the state, from the employed industrial workers to the unemployed, the youth, women, ethnic minorities.
Argentina’s growing WSM movement, particularly in the occupied factories and in the enterprises organized by the unemployed workers’ movements the MTD have opened a wide-ranging debate on the structure, trajectory and politics of the movement. In the debate at the Foro Social Mundial on “Emprendimentos Productivos, Propuestas Obreras Desocupacion y el Cierra de Empresas” it became clear from the interventions of workers from Grissinoppoli and Bruckman, that the workers’ takeover was the result of necessity not ideology: the workers had not been paid for several months and when paid their pay was reduced; the owner was emptying the factory and dismantling machinery, etc. In other words, the worker takeover was a desperate act to save their jobs. Once the factories were organized, then the more political workers in general assemblies proposed that the workers organize production and sales without the capitalists. Eventually, the move toward a WSM factory attracted economists and professionals who offered technical advise on how to operate the factory. In the course of these developments, as Ivana from Grissinoppoli stated, “we are learning every day…the struggle is long…but we are learning to jump over the obstacles because we listen and we understand each other”. The struggle and the practice of self-management is creating the class consciousness as much after the factory occupations as before. The Argentine experience with WSM in the unemployed workers is also leading to new forms of social organization popular assemblies. As Valdemar (MTD-Solano) noted, the guiding organizational principles of the movement is direct democracy, horizontality, and autonomy. The distrust of representative democracy is based previous barrio and trade union experiences where leaders were bought off or corrupted. As our previous discussions of experiences with WSM in Peru and Bolivia suggests this is a real problem.
The WSM movement particularly among some of the activists in the occupied factory are aware of the need for solidarity with other movements and popular sectors. For example, faced with the threat of factory eviction by the state, they have called on the neighborhood assemblies, and the unemployed movement to join in the defense of their workplace. The growing coordination between the factory occupation workers’ movement and the unemployed workers has increased, particularly in moments of crises, and in the face of growing state repression. As Hector (MTD from Guernica) recognized the threat of militarization is imposing the need for the broadest popular unity between factories, assemblies and MTD.
Some of the leaders of the unemployed workers’ movement not only understand the limits of islands of WSM in a capitalist market, but also project the need for actively participating in the general political struggle at the national level. As Martino of the MTR stated at the FSM meeting, besides resolving immediate problems and recognizing the importance of construction of local power it is important to understand that this local power is linked to the construction of a political force, a national social force. The building of alliances between the unemployed workers’ movement and the WSM in the occupied factories is described by a delegate from Zanon in the following synoptic terms. During the initial factory occupation, the organized unemployed workers’ joined in defending the ceramics plant from efforts by the former owners to forcibly dislodge the workers, calling on the police. The mass united resistance effectively blocked them. Subsequently, Zanon ceramics a well known and respected product expanded production, and hired ten workers from among the unemployed in the movement.
The Argentine WSM movement organized two national events, a march on August 24, 2002 involving over 3,000 workers and delegates from the occupied factories supported by dissident trade union leaders demanding workers’ control over all the productive units which are bankrupt, are not meeting their payroll, firing workers, or selling off machinery and equipment.
The WSM movement however, is in the midst of a major debate over several issues:
1) the form of the occupied enterprise cooperative or worker self-managed?
2) the alliances, should it include politicians from the traditional parties or no parties (autonomy) or only Left parties (and which ones)?
3) the perspective should the focus be exclusively local, regional, sectoral or national?
Previous historical experiences provide us with some guidelines.
First alliances with traditional parties have served to co-opt leaders, to isolate WSM from the larger struggle and to bureaucratize the internal structure. The most successful alliances are horizontal alliances, networks of workers and popular classes organized in assemblies and with a class perspective toward transforming state power.
Second, while cooperatives have improved their members’ living standards, they have usually found a niche in the capitalist system. At a time when close to 60% of the population is below the poverty line and 4 million children of the 8 million below the poverty line ,are suffering from malnutrition and related illnesses, the political need is to go beyond “islands” of success to basic changes in the socio-economic structure a transformation from savage capitalism to a worker self-managed socialism.
Thirdly, while the autonomy of the unemployed and WSM movements is positive insofar as it rejects state tutelage and party control, it would be an error to reject allying with Left parties and other social movements that share common goals and tactics of direct action. The example of Bolivia with its highly class-conscious but isolated mining sector is an example of how autonomy carried to its extreme, is self-defeating.
Fourthly, there are at best between 100,000 and 200,000 unemployed worker organized and in action approximately 5 to 6 million unemployed and underemployed who are unorganized.
The success of the political and social organization of the popular classes in WSM and unemployed movements as we have seen in other countries, provokes repression and violence by the ruling classes. At some point the movements, as they grow and gather momentum, will have to establish mechanisms of self-defense and many forms of resistance, to avoid the fate of the WSM movements in Chile and Bolivia.
The key to the success of the WSM in Argentina depends on deepening the ties to the existing networks, with the neighborhood assemblies, the progressive trade unionists, and the organization of the unorganized. Unity of action is of the highest priority as the crises deepens, factory closings multiply and repression increases. The basic policy of solidarity “tocas uno tocas todos” is a good starting point toward the task of creating a national political movement capable of challenging state power.
James Petras and Henry Veltmeyer
The world’s first explicitly anarchist-feminist group was created as part of the thriving nineteenth-century Anarchist movement in Argentina. It produced the first anarcha-feminist newspaper, La Voz de la Mujer. Sadly, the history of anarchist-feminism in Argentina has rarely been acknowledged, at best mentioned in passing, at worse ignored or forgotten.
La Voz de la Mujer was published in Buenos Aires only nine times, beginning on January 8, 1896 and ending almost exactly one year later on New Year’s Day. Its donors included “Women Avengers Group,” “One Who Wants to Fill a Cannon with the Heads of the Bourgeois,” “Long Live Dynamite,” “Long Live Free Love,” “A Feminist,” “A Female Serpent to Devour the Bourgeois,” “Full of Beer,” “A Man Friendly to Women.” Most of it was written in Spanish, with only occasional items in Italian. This is not surprising, as it was primarily from Spain that anarchist feminism came to Argentina. Even the feminist material in the Italian press was written largely by Spanish authors. Another version of the paper and bearing its name was published in the provincial town of Rosario (its editor, Virginia Bolten was the only woman known to have been deported in 1902 under the Residence Law, which gave the government the power to expel immigrants active in political organizations). Another La Voz de la Mujer was published in Montevideo, where Bolten was exiled to.
La Voz de la Mujer described itself as “dedicated to the advancement of Communist Anarchism.” Its central theme was that of the multiple nature of women’s oppression. An editorial asserted, “We believe that in present-day society nothing and nobody has a more wretched situation than unfortunate women.”Women, they said, were doubly oppressed – by bourgeois society and by men. Its feminism can be seen from its attack on marriage and upon male power over women. Its contributors, like anarchist feminists elsewhere, developed a concept of oppression that focused on gender oppression. Marriage was a bourgeois institution which restricted women’s freedom, including their sexual freedom. Marriages entered into without love, fidelity maintained through fear rather than desire, oppression of women by men they hated – all were seen as symptomatic of the coercion implied by the marriage contract. It was this alienation of the individual’s will that the anarchist feminists deplored and sought to remedy, initially through free love and then, and more thoroughly, through social revolution.
La Voz de la Mujer was a paper written by women for women, it was an independent expression of an explicitly feminist current within South America’s labour movement and was one of the first recorded instances of the fusion of feminist ideas with a revolutionary and working-class orientation. As with Emma Goldman, Louise Michel and Voltairine de Cleyre, it differed from the mainstream feminism by being a working class movement which placed the struggle against patriarchy as part of a wider struggle against economic and social classes and hierarchies. It was not centred on educated middle-class women, whose feminism was dismissed as a “bourgeois” or “reformist.”
Anarchist feminism emerged in Buenos Aires in the 1890s, where the growth of the economy increased the demand for labour which was satisfied through immigration on a vast scale. The largest ethnic group were the Italians, followed by the Spaniards and French. It was among these immigrant communities that the group producing La Voz de la Mujer arose and was active. As with elsewhere in the Americas, Anarchism was originally imported by immigrants from the European countries in which there was a strong Anarchist movement – Italy, Spain, and France. Anarchist groups and publications first emerged in the 1860s and the 1870s and, due to the social conditions in Argentina, found fertile soil. Like the immigrant communities they were part of, the anarchists formed an integral part of the working class movement in Argentina and shaping its ideas and struggles. The anarchists helped form some of the first unions, organising strikes and demonstrations. In the 1880s and 1890s there were sometimes as many as 20 Anarchist papers being published at any one time, in French, Spanish, and Italian.
La Voz de la Mujer appeared after half a century of continuous Anarchist activity. It was part of the communist-anarchist tradition and was dedicated to the overthrow of the existing society and the creation of a new, just, and egalitarian social order organized on the principle of “from each according to ability, to each according to need.” As was the case elsewhere, a distinctive feminist current developed with the main impulse for anarchist feminism coming from Spanish activists (however, Italian exiles like Errico Malatesta and Pietro Gori gave support to feminist ideas in their journals and articles). Equal pay for women was raised as a demand and supported by a significant number of labour unions in the Argentine Workers’ Federation in 1901.
La Voz de la Mujer militant anti-reformist stance aroused response among women workers in the cities of Buenos Aires, La Plata, and Rosario, as it lasted a year and printed between 1,000 and 2,000 copies of each issue, a respectable number for an Anarchist paper of its time. Its editors were drawn from the large Spanish and Italian communities and identified themselves with the women of the working class. Its distinctiveness as an Anarchist paper lay in its recognition of the specificity of women’s oppression. It called upon women to mobilise against their subordination both as women and as workers. Its first editorial was a passionate rejection of women’s lot:
“fed up as we are with so many tears and so much misery; fed up with the never ending drudgery of children (dear though they are); fed up with asking and begging; of being a plaything for our infamous exploiters or vile husbands, we have decided to raise our voices in the concert of society and demand, yes, demand our bit of pleasure in the banquet of life.”
Its appearance received a mixed response from the rest of the Anarchist movement, ranging from silence and hostility to praise. One paper gave it a particularly warm welcome, stating that “a group of militant women have unfurled the red flag of anarchy and intend to publish a magazine for propaganda among those who are their comrades both in work and in misery. We greet the valiant initiators of this project, and at the same time we call on all our comrades to support them.” This was unsurprising, as a substantial section of the Anarchist press was sympathetic to feminist issues at this time. The mid-1890s in Argentina saw increasing coverage of issues relating to women’s equality and in particular to marriage, the family, prostitution, and the domination of women by men. Some papers even published special series of pamphlets devoted to “the woman question.” La Questione Sociale, the Italian-language paper founded by Malatesta when he came to Argentina in 1883, published a series of pamphlets“especially dedicated to an analysis of women’s issues.” The journal Germinal, which first appeared in 1897, was particularly concerned with the “woman question” and carried several articles under the general heading of “Feminism,”and it defended “the extremely revolutionary and just character of feminism”against the charge that it was merely a creation of “elegant little ladies.” Much if not all of the feminist material in the Anarchist press appears to have been written by women.
Yet this apparent sympathy for feminism in principle within the Anarchist ranks was matched by substantial opposition in practice. The first issue of La Voz de la Mujer seems to have aroused considerable hostility, because in the following issue the editors attacked the antifeminist attitudes prevalent among men in the movement in no uncertain terms. As they put it:
“When we women, unworthy and ignorant as we are, took the initiative and published La Voz de la Mujer, we should have known, Oh modem rogues, how you would respond with your old mechanistic philosophy to our initiative. You should have realized that we stupid women have initiative and that is the product of thought. You know – we also think . . . The first number of La Voz de la Mujer appeared and of course, all hell broke loose: ‘Emancipate women? For what?’ ‘Emancipate women? Not on your nelly!’ . . . ‘Let our emancipation come first, and then, when we men are emancipated and free, we shall see about yours.’”
The editors concluded that women can hardly rely upon men to take the initiative in demanding equality for women, given this kind of hostile attitude. The same issue contains an article entitled “To the Corrupters of the Ideal” in which men are warned, “You had better understand once and for all that our mission is not reducible to raising your children and washing your clothes and that we also have a right to emancipate ourselves and to be free from all kinds of tutelage, whether economic or marital.” The editorial in the third issue emphasised that they were attacking not male Anarchist comrades in general but only those “false Anarchists” who failed to defend “one of Anarchism’s most beautiful ideals – the emancipation of women.”
The editors’ outrage was justified given that Anarchism advocated freedom and equality for all humankind, not just men. As women were oppressed by patriarchy they, as an oppressed group, could rightly demand support from fellow Anarchists in their struggle for emancipation. However, for many male anarchists such issues could be ignored until “after the revolution” a position the editors of La Voz de la Mujer rightly rejected as self-serving. Unsurprisingly, Anarchism, more than other schools of socialism with their emphasis on economic exploitation, was able to accommodate the struggle against patriarchy. However, this theoretical support for feminism was more often than not associated with sexism in practice.
It is not difficult to see why feminists were attracted to Anarchism and why they were so rightly opposed to male anarchist hypocrisy. Its key ideas stress the struggle against authority, including the power exercised over women in marriage and the family. All anarchists should be seeking freedom within relationships. The Anarchist emphasis on oppression and on power relations opened up a space within which women could be seen simultaneously as the victims of class society and as the victims of male authority. As La Voz de la Mujer expressed it in its fourth issue: “We hate authority because we aspire to be human beings and not machines directed by the will of ‘another,’ be this authority, religion, or any other name.” Its aim is best summed up when one of its supporters signed herself “No God, No Boss, No Husband.”
For more information see Maxine Molyneux’s “No God, No Boss, No Husband: Anarchist Feminism in Nineteenth-Century Argentina” (Latin American Perspectives, Vol. 13, No. 1, Latin America’s Nineteenth-Century History, Winter, 1986) on which this article is based.
Ernesto Gevara de la Serna
9th October marks the 47. anniversary of the murder of Argentine revolutionary Ernesto Che Guevara, who was in 1967. killed in Bolivia with age of 39th in the village of La Higuera, in the Bolivian province of Valle Grande by the Bolivian army supported by imperialist America (CIA agents ) .
Symbol of revolution in Latin America, he graduated medicine in Buenos Aires (1953), later he went to Guatemala , and in Mexico , where he met Fidel Castro , with whose expedition in 1956. landed in Cuba . After the victory of the revolution 1959. he became in 1961th Minister of Economy and left Cuba in 1965th in order to lead an uprising in Bolivia for the liberation of South America from U.S. dominance .
The last appearance of Che Guevara in front of the Cuban public occurred on 15 of March 1965th after his visit – a long trip through Europe and Africa , from where he disappeared without a trace , crossing underground , preparing for battle , and the realization of his plan , “the recovery of guerrilla internationalism .”
More important than the ministry place for him was to contribute to the development of the guerrilla movement, and spreading the revolution. He could not stop in one place, his revolutionary spirit is thought to contribute to the revolution in this way , fighting , no matter how he did not agree with Kastro , Moscow, and no matter how the chances were small.He was stubborn ,willful, revolutionary.
During the Cuban Revolution , he worked on literacy farmers, illiterate people , and all the time he was reading , writing , and developing ideas. Through travel by socialist countries met this systems , and did not want bureaucratization of revolution, and the creation of ” imperialism transpose .” He visited Yugoslavia , wanted to explore self-management socialism in this country.
“Recuerden que el eslabón más alto que puede alcanzar la especie humana es ser revolucionario.” Che Guevara.
Cuban revolution(1952-1958) :
Prevod na Srpsko-Hrvatski
9. oktobra navršava se 47. godišnjica od ubistva argentinskog revolucionara Ernesto Che Guevare koji je 1967. ubijen u Boliviji u 39. godini života u selu La Igera, u bolivijskoj provinciji Valje Grande od strane Bolivijske vojske potpomognute imperijalističkim, američkim (CIA agentima).
Simbol revolucije u Latinskoj Americi, diplomirao je medicinu u Buenos Airesu 1953. godine potom otišao u Gvatemalu, pa u Meksiko, gde je upoznao Fidela Kastra, sa čijom ekspedicijom se 1956. iskrcao na Kubu. Poslije pobjede revolucije 1959. postao je 1961. ministar privrede, a Kubu je napustio 1965. u namjeri da u Boliviji povede ustanak za oslobođenje Južne Amerike od dominacije SAD-a.
Poslednje pojavljivanje Che Guevare pred kubanskom javnošću desilo se 15. marta 1965. poslije posjete – putovanja po Evropi i Africi, od kada mu se gubi svaki trag, prelazi u ilegalu, priprema se za borbe i ostvarenje svog nauma, “uspostavljanje gerilskog internacionalizma”.
Važnije od ministarskog mjesta, bilo mu je da doprinese razvoju gerilskog pokreta, i širenju revolucije. Nije se mogao zaustaviti u jednom mjestu njegov revolucionarni duh Mislio je da će više doprinjeti revoluciji na ovaj način, boreći se, ma kako se ne slagali u tome sa Kastrom, Moskvom, i ma kako šanse bile male.
U toku Kubanske revolucije radio je na opismenjavanju seljaka, nepismenih ljudi, i sve vreme je čitao, pisao, i razvijao ideje. Kroz putovanja po socijalističkim zemljama upoznao je ove sisteme, i nije želeo birokratizam revolucije, i stvaranje “imperijalizma iz druge ruke”. Posjetio je i Jugoslaviju, želio je da upozna samoupravni socijalizam ove zemlje.
“Recuerden que el eslabón más alto que puede alcanzar la especie humana es ser revolucionario.” Che Guevara.
Cubanska revolucija (1952-1958) :
Che Guevare Mauzolej (Mauzolej Che Guevare) je spomen-u Santa Clari na Kubi
source: Revolution Sociale