(photo credit: REUTERS)
Zionist Union baffled many with its use of an image of Marxist guerrilla leader Che Guevara, best known for his part in the Cuban revolution, in its campaign this week.
The party set up a stand with Guevara’s iconic image, which can be found on T-shirts and posters around the world, at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya Sunday, with the words “we are the revolution” under it.
Guevara’s face is cut out, to enable passersby to pose with their face in the image. The party had a photographer on hand who made magnets for the students with their photos. A Zionist Union spokesman said Monday that the stand will be brought to college campuses throughout the week.
Reshet Bet reporter Eran Cicurel asked Zionist Union activists at the stand what Guevara has to do with the party, and they gave answers like “the spirit of revolution” and “he symbolizes someone who came from the people and made a change.”
Guevara symbolizes revolution and the fight against imperialists and oppressors – among whom he counted Israel – to many, having played a leading role in overthrowing the Batista regime in Cuba in the 1950s. But he was also responsible for firing squads that killed hundreds during the Cuban revolutionary tribunals, shooting many himself. He also supported the use of concentration camps in Cuba, where dissidents, homosexuals, Catholics, Jehovah’s Witnesses and others were sent at gunpoint starting in 1960.
The Argentinean-born revolutionary wrote in “Message to the Tricontinental” in 1967 that revolutionaries should consider “hatred as an element of struggle, unbending hatred for the enemy, which pushes a human being beyond his natural limitations, making him into an effective, violent, selective and cold-blooded killing machine.”
Guevara also visited Gaza – which was then occupied by Egypt – in 1959 to show solidarity with the Palestinians and teach them guerrilla tactics, and expressed support for the PLO when it was founded in 1965.
Zionist Union’s spokesman declined to comment when asked about the darker side of Guevara’s image, and Likud said in response that the matter speaks for itself.
A Zionist Union activist told Cicurel: “We’re not Marxists or anything. We want something that puts a spotlight on the word ‘revolution,’ because we’re going to bring a revolution... Young people don’t connect him to the Marxist Revolution. We don’t want to turn the country into an anti-democratic dictatorship or something like that.