Cuba Icons: Fidel Castro and Che Guevara
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Cuba Icons: Fidel Castro and Che Guevara

Cuba, la Havana Books

Cuba Icons: Fidel Castro and Che Guevara

 Cuba-Fidel-Castro-Che-GuevaraI guess that lots of people wonder what Cuba will become in the future years. That’s the reason why I’m glad having visited it now – although just for a few days.

Too little time to understand, however enough to gather at least an overall impression.  And to experience why it’s so easy to feel almost immediately wild about Cuba.

Even at a quick glance,  a few things impressed me: people always smiling and welcoming although being very poor, the ubiquitous prostitution – in my opinion the greatest plague of the poorest countries -, the partial reluctance (likely driven by the fear of negative consequences) in talking about the day-to-day life coping with embargo, poverty and containment, the charm and contradictions of La Havana.

And the two most important Cuba icons: Che Guevara and Fidel Castro.

The Plaza de Armas, in La Havana, is emblematic. Everywhere photos, books, flags, portraits, gadgets. Many of Fidel Castro and much more of ‘El Che’.

And although I am unable to imagine what the future of Cuba  could be in the coming years I cannot help myself to feel amazed by the power that Che Guevara as a symbol and a myth still holds.  I thought this was mostly related to an idealization of El Che icon in many countries but apparently he is still alive in Cuba. A symbol of hope?

Cuba, la Havana Books



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  • Ana O'Reilly
    Posted at 19:50h, 08 August Reply

    I’d like to share a different view of Che. What no one seems to remember is that he was a terrorist and a murdered at the beginning of his “career” He led a guerrilla campaign = death and violence. He used violence to achieve what he did. I’m not saying that change wasn’t necessary, of course it was, but he was no saint.

    On a lighter note, I really did enjoy reading your post.

  • Janice
    Posted at 16:19h, 13 July Reply

    Nice post Simon. I agree. I saw people as happy for the most part. When I wrote a post on Cuba I was challenged for this perception. Nice pics!

  • ciki
    Posted at 14:24h, 13 July Reply

    how interesting Simon.. looks like you really captured the spirit of Cuba! welldone:)

    • waitinginthedark
      Posted at 21:55h, 17 July Reply

      @Janice, thank you for your comment. I’m glad you liked the post. And it’s interesting to read that you shared the same perception when you visited Cuba.
      @Ciki, ehm… thanks but… I may have captured just a very little piece of Cuba spirit. I would have needed more time and most of all more contacts with the local people. But at least I got a glimse! 🙂

  • ayngelina
    Posted at 06:01h, 08 July Reply

    I read a lot about Che before coming to Central America and was interested to see how he would be portrayed. But now being in CA I’ve realized that he’s a symbol of hope that regular people can affect change and no one gets caught up in the details of what he may or may not have done in subsequent years.

    He’s definitely alive in Central America and it’s not just for tourists.

    • waitinginthedark
      Posted at 12:47h, 09 July Reply

      Very interesting comment, Ayngelina. I agree with you that no one – or only a very limited number of people – really knows or is even interested in knowing the details.
      I can’t say if this is a good or bad thing. But I believe that people, especially the ones who are disadvantaged and poor, need a symbol for hope that their life could be better one day.

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