Today I was struck by an interview in Venezuela’s daily El Nacional with Che Guevara‘s grandson Canek Sánchez Guevara. Firstly because I didn’t know he existed. He said he didn’t agree with the Castro regime in Cuba, which ‘has behaved like a monarchy’. But Canek (1974) wouldn’t like being called Che Guevara’s grandson, because he hasn’t ever known his grandfather, who already had died when he was born. In an interview he said “Che means less to me than my other grandfather with whom I could play and laugh.” Canek says he grew up in politically leftist surroundings with lots of inspiring discussions. The Cuban government is not revolutionary, because the revolution questions profoundly the state, he says, while the Cuban government doesn’t allow such questionings.
In El Nacional he predicts a complete chaos if the Cuban economy will not be opened in a controlled way. At the same day the United States president Barack Obama announces that Cubans in the United States will be allowed to travel to Cuba and to send money to their relatives. It is not yet known what will be the consequences, but it is indeed an important decision, which more than the current president Raul Castro’s cautious political adaptions could provoke a change.
It is not yet known how Cuba’s government will react. But to get back to Canek, he lives in France and is not allowed to visit in the Cuba where his grandfather is still considered a heroe, according to El Nacional.
Canek predicts that changes will only be possible after the death of former president Fidel Castro, Raúl’s brother. The question now is if Obama’s measure can change this.
The other question is if and when Canek himself will return to Cuba and if perhaps he will feel like playing a part in the island’s political development. Quite a different one from the revolution his grandfather helped begin in the fifties.