La Higuera: 50 Years after Che’s Death

Every people from all five continents arrive in La Higuera to pay homage to the guerilla commander.

Getting to know and abound on the history of Che’s presence in Bolivia is important to visit La Higuera, town located at about 60 km from Vallegrande, where the Heroic Guerilla fighter stayed the last days of his life.

Until that village a group of Prensa Latina journalists traveled because of the activities organized there for the 50th anniversary of the revolutionary leader's physical disappearance.

The trip to La Higuera is usually complicated, especially for the uphill and winding road leading there and many times vehicles must drive by the edge of the abyss.

But arriving to the place is like a trip in time because there can still be felt that special atmosphere that remembers the years of guerilla fight.

Ernesto Guevara de la Serna came to Bolivia in November 1966 to lead a liberation movement known as La Guerrilla de Ñancahuazú, which wanted to spread to the south of Latin America.

For 11 months the group commanded by Che traveled difficult roads of the Bolivian southeasterly forest and participated in 22 battles and skirmishes. On October 8th, 1967 Che was wounded and captured in Quebrada del Yuro (Churo) and moved to the school of La Higuera, where he was murdered next day on orders of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the United States.

Today the school turned into a museum where pictures can be seen, written documents, furniture of the time and replicas of the clothing and objects used by the guerillas fighters.

'This is a place to spread Ernesto Guevara's ideas, declared to Prensa Latina the French photographer Juan Lebras who lives there for 12 years now.

Lebras organized an exhibition of pictures under the name 'To the Heart of the Guerrilla', where there are many unpublished images, of Ernesto Guevara's last days in Bolivia.

'They are 50 pictures for the 50 years of Che’s death, he said.

Every year people from all five continents arrive to pay homage to the guerilla commander.

'I have been preparing this trip for a long time', said the Argentinean Victor Hugo Leiva who arrived at La Higuera on the fiftieth anniversary of Che’s death.

For Leiva, Ernesto Guevara is still a leader and his teachings today they are more necessary than never because poverty still exist in the world and capitalism has not solved any problem.

This year, as part of the homage to Che and its guerrilla partners, will have a 15 km walk from Pucará town to La Higuera to which is expected the participation of social and political organizations from several countries of the region.

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  • Published in World
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