The eldest son of revolutionary leader Ernesto "Che" Guevara has expressed mixed feelings ahead of Barack Obama’s visit to Cuba on March 20, the first of a U.S. president in 88 years.
“It’s a historic and very important visit. It’s the first time a U.S. president will visit an independent Cuba,” Guevara said to the Guardian adding that the U.S. remains an empire.
“Their nature is not to set the table and invite you for a feast. History shows us that every time they set a table, you have to accept you might be poisoned or stabbed in the back. But let’s see.”
The historic visit is part of a series of actions taken by Washington and Havana in order to smooth relations between the two former Cold War adversaries. Both governments have reopened embassies in Washington and Havana, and restored commercial air travel.
“I don’t know Obama in person. He appears intelligent and sensitive towards the major problems of humanity, but he came to power in an election, not a revolution. He was supported by corporate America,” Guevara says. “The color of skin is one thing, the color of ideology is another.
The Argentine-born physician along with Fidel Castro fought side-by-side in a guerrilla campaign to oust the U.S.-backed Batista dictatorship in Cuba in 1959. After holding several government posts in Cuba, he set off for the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1965 to spread communism.
Then traveled to Bolivia, where was captured and later executed by CIA-backed Bolivian soldiers on Oct. 9, 1967. Nearly 50 years after the death of Guevara’s father, Latin America, in particular, has seen a resurgence of the ideas that he represented justice, equality, and liberation of the oppressed.