Title The Ugly Truth Behind Che's Commu-Chic - by Johann Hari

The Evening Standard (London), 19 June, 2006.

A long sticky trickle of blood is seeping from the oh-so-civilised
doors of the V&A museum. It has just dedicated a swish, stylish
wing to celebrating a psychopathic mass murderer, a man whose cause
killed even more people than Adolf Hitler's - and dozens of British
critics have burst out with applause.

The man they are celebrating boasted that he wanted to turn humans
into "violent, selective and cold-blooded killing machines". He set
up a string of concentration camps. He bragged about his willingness
to lobby for dropping a nuclear bomb on New York. His advice to his
inferiors about dealing with dissedents was "if in doubt, kill him".
His name was Che Guevara.

Instead of telling you any of this, the V&A's Che exhibition is
filled with moist panegyrics to the man. It lauds his "irresistible
aura of authority, independence and defiance".

In reality, amid the competing strands to the Cuban revolution Che
stood implacably for forming a hard-line alliance with the Soviet
Union and Maoist China (collective death toll 100m). Fanatically
following their ideology, he established labour camps in Cuba and
believed that the slave state of North Korea, where people are shot
for advocating elections and almost everyone is emaciated, was the
"most impressive" of the communist states he visited.

And what does the V&A say about this? Its exhibition notes in passing
that "there is debate about the true nature of Che's activities",
but it doesn't say what this debate is. It then offers a long string
of apologies for his slaughter. "He took up violence as a means of
ending oppression" it repeats as fact, when in reality he took up
violence to replace one form of aggression with another, even more
viscious, kind.

It even claims that he stood for the rights of gay people, when in
fact he believed that homosexuality was a decadent deviation and
the concentration camps he built in Cuba were eventually used to
imprison gay people and AIDS victims.

His only criticism of the Soviet Union came in the last years of
his life, when he claimed it had become too soft since the fall of
Stalin and was adopting the "law of value" - allowing some free
exchange of goods.

Yet still hundreds of thousands of Londoners traipse around the V&A
fawning at the commu-chic.

Note: I can't find the original of this, so I copied it locally.