THE GREAT REBEL: Che Guevara in Bolivia by Luis J. & Gustavo A. Sanchez Salazar Gonzalez

THE GREAT REBEL: Che Guevara in Bolivia

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This fact-straightening account of the nineteen-month guerrilla campaign provides a polar contrast to Daniel James' long preface to the Bolivian diaries (1968). James' coolly analytic appraisal of the reasons the foco failed was geared to an audience of anti-Communist experts. Gonzalez and Sanchez earnestly plead the necessity for Latin American revolution. They make no direct response to fellow leftists' contentions that Bolivia was the wrong place and isolated guerrilla warfare a mistaken strategy (as found, e.g., in the Huberman-Sweezy collection on Regis Debray, 1968). The authors note lacunae (who really shot Guevara in the arm?) and fill in details (the remaining guerrillas' escape). They give surprisingly little data concerning the Bolivian Communist Party's anti-guerrilla machinations. Debray's torture and interrogation, and the CIA's involvement in destroying the foco, are well-documented. The book begins with Bolivian history and Guevara's biography. It ends with a tribute -- to which Guevara himself would arguably have preferred a serious examination of strategic questions. However, no one can object to the book's historiographic purpose. The results constitute an obligatory reference on the subject.

Pub Date: April 25th, 1969
Publisher: Grove