CAIRO – 15 June 2022: Born on June 14, 1928, Cuban revolutionary and Argentine Marxist Che Guevara was a physician, writer, military commander, statesman, and a major figure in the Cuban Revolution, whose image –since his death- became an ubiquitous symbol of revolution, and a global badge in popular culture.
Che Guevara visited Egypt twice, both during the era of late President Gamal Abdel Nasser. According to late journalist Mohammad Hassanein Heikal's book “Abdel Nasser and the World”, Guevara first visited Egypt in June 1959 and stayed for 15 days to study the Egyptian experience in the agrarian reform.
Nasser received Guevara upon his arrival in Cairo, and held a dinner party for him at Al-Qubba Palace. Guevara did not like diplomatic protocol or the red carpet placed by his recipients. He tried several times to mislead his companions to go to popular areas and meet the common people.
In his book, Heikal confirms that when Guevara began to discuss the issues of the agrarian reform with Abdel Nasser, the differences between them seemed clear. Heikal reveals that Guevara asked Nasser about the number of Egyptians who were forced to leave the country, and Nasser replied that their number was not large, and that they were mostly white Egyptians, that is, from the category of foreign nationals who became Egyptians by virtue of their residence in Egypt.
Guevara's second visit was in February 1965. Nasser organized a ceremony in which he presented Guevara with the Order of the United Arab Republic of the first degree, after which he gave a speech to the Egyptians about the Cuban revolution, social equality and the industrial revolution.
In his second visit to Egypt, Guevara was accompanied by a number of leaders of the Cuban revolution. He told Abdel Nasser that he wanted to head to Africa to carry out revolutionary activities, particularly in Congo because it was “the most stressed place on earth.”
Guevara wanted to globalize the South American revolution in all turbulent parts of the globe. Seeking Liberation and the will to die for it is the belief that Guevara lived by and died for.