“Looking for the perfect finger puppet of a communist mass murderer for your favorite comrade this holiday season?”
That’s the question asked bymagnetic finger puppets of Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara by the liberal magazine The Nation.
“We may not know where Castro is these days, but we know where Che Guevara is: on your finger as a magnetic finger puppet!” the item’s description states, according to Weinstein. “On your finger, he’s a puppet; on your fridge, he’s a magnet; in your puppet collection he incites the others to rise against their capitalistic oppressors!”
As might be expected, The Nation is not dissuaded by the truth about Guevara, who is seen as a pop cultural hero by many on the left.
Last year, in response to Urban Outfitter offering merchandise emblazoned with the image of Guevara, Thor Halvorssen, a human rights advocate described by the New York Times as “a champion of the underdog and the powerless,” wrote an open letter that expanded on who Guevara really was.
Halvorssen wrote that despite promises of a new democratic government, within a few months of overthrowing the dictorial Batista regime in Cuba, Guevara and Castro “had designed and installed a full-blown police state that deprived the overwhelming majority of Cuban citizens of democracy and human rights.”
“From 1959 to 1960, the new government carried out summary executions of at least 1,118 people by firing squad,” he added. “Guevara himself presided over the notorious La Cabaña prison, where hundreds of the executions took place.”
“The Cuban revolution under the direction of Guevara also saw the rise of forced labor camps which gave way a few years later to full-scale concentration camps… filled with dissidents, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Afro-Cuban priests, and anyone else who had committed “crimes” against the new moral revolution,” Halvorssen continued.
The Nation’s online store said of the finger puppet: “It’s as adorable, appealing and cuddly as the real Che was intense, violent, and cuddly” — just don’t ask the families of the thousands who died at his hands.