Latinxios, also known as Axios Latino has displayed its deafness by naming the literacy brigades of Castro’s dictatorship “Hispanic Heritage”
Axios Latino (a joint venture of Telemundo) is a weekly feature that targets English-dominant Hispanics throughout the United States. According to their initial press release, it promises:
- Analyze and compare the economic impact of major political and economic stories upon the Latino community
- Select the most important stories that reflect Latino perspectives
- Original reporting and analysis can provide insight into the most important issues.
- Provide readers with a complete resource for Latino news
Latinxios mirrors the Spanish-language counterparts of Latinxios, in that it is heavily focused upon Mexico, immigration, and progressive policies. But as part of that curation of “best stories highlighting Latino perspectives”, reporter Russell Contreras saw fit to publish an item titled, “Hispanic Heritage and Cuba’s Literacy Legacy”. Anticommunists immediately recognize that headline, as well as the remainder of the article as one of their favorite tools for whitewashing Castro’s legacy. But literacy! “But literacy!” As they shout, they are trying to drown out the images of Havana crumbling and of the dictatorship brutally suppressing voices calling for liberation.
Missing from the piece is the fact that the “Patria o Muerte (Homeland or Death) Literary Brigades” were mainly a propaganda instrument led by murderous, racist homophobe Ché Guevara. The brigades, under the guise of eradicating illiteracy, spread revolutionary indoctrination throughout rural Cuba while furthering Fidel Castro’s cult of personality. Contemporaneous propaganda even characterized the success as a blow to America, and further illustrated the point via a depiction of a brigadier driving a giant pencil through the heart of a bald eagle. (More imagery here, thanks to our friends at Babalú Blog.)
Cuba’s literary heritage, which is a supposed focus of the Axios article, has been around long before the Castro dictatorship and its literacy brigades. The piece is merely meant to erase a crucial component of communist Castro’s dictatorship and then insert it into Hispanic Heritage Month.
Some Latinxios may choose to accept the Castro dictatorship as part of their “Hispanic Heritage” That’s not going to happen for me or my home.