Leadership of Guevara, Che (1928 – 1967)

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Guevara, Che, real name Ernesto Guevara (1928-1967), is revered as the greatest revolutionary hero of all time. The Latin American guerrilla leader and revolutionary theorist, who became a hero to the New Left radicals of the 1960s was without a doubt a man ahead of his time.

The Man
Born into a middle-class family in Rosario, Argentina, Guevara, as a young man was convinced that revolution was the only remedy for Latin America’s social inequities. Just one year after receiving a medical degree from the University of Buenos Aires in 1953, he went to Mexico, where he joined exiled Cuban revolutionaries under Fidel Castro. Guevara rose quickly through the ranks and played an important role in Castro’s guerrilla war against Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista a few years later. When Castro came to power, he served as Cuba’s minister of industry (1961-1965). Always a strong opponent of U.S. influence in the Third World, he helped guide the Castro regime on its leftward and pro-Communist path. A prolific writer, Guevara authored two books on guerrilla warfare, advocating peasant-based revolutionary movements in the developing countries.

Known for his fiery speeches, Guevara made two stirring speeches between 1964 and 1965 – one was at the 19th UN General Assembly and the other, his last public speech in Algiers before the Second Economic Seminar of the Afro-Asian Solidarity. He was intensely interested in that seminar because of its themes and because it would afford him an opportunity for fraternal discussions with comrades representing those countries.

The innovative content of his speech at the seminar riveted the audience. He defined new political, economic and social parameters and spoke of the firm steps that the underdeveloped countries must be at the ready to take along the route towards a new society where machinery, the instruments of work, are not instrumental in the exploitation of human beings by other human beings.

Guevara disappeared from Cuba in 1965, reappearing the following year as an insurgent leader in Bolivia. He was captured by the Bolivian army and shot near Vallegrande on October 9, 1967. His last words to his killer: “I know you’ve come to kill me. Shoot, coward, you’re only going to kill a man!”

Lessons In Career Leadership From Che Guevara
Guevara had one objective in life: the shaping of humanity and to do that through honesty and bravery. Although he had his share of critics and enemies, Guevara always held on to his ideals and beliefs. That was what made him such a well-liked leader. In career accomplishments too, it is important to understand the simple truth that the greater they are, the greater opposition, torment and discouragement your enemies will throw in your path. Expect it! Don’t become a victim of it.

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