Humberto Fontova

The top act at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week featured Mercedes Benz’ Chairman Dieter Zetsche peddling his company’s new gadgetry under a huge picture of Che Guevara, who sported the Mercedes logo on his beret. “Viva la Revolucion!” beamed the cheeky Herr Zetsche while unveiling his brilliant ad campaign.

In other words: to sell cars in the U.S., Mercedes Benz is relying on the mass appeal in the U.S. of the mass-murdering Stalinist who craved to destroy the U.S.

“The U.S. is the great enemy of mankind!” raved Mercedes Benz new U.S. sales icon. “Against those hyenas there is no option but extermination! We will bring the war to the imperialist enemies’ (Americans) very home, to his places of work and recreation. The imperialist enemy (Americans) must feel like a hunted animal wherever he moves. Thus we’ll destroy him! We must keep our hatred (against the U.S.) alive and fan it to paroxysm! If the nuclear missiles had remained (in Cuba) we would have fired them against the heart of the U.S. including New York City. The solutions to the world’s problems lie behind the Iron Curtain. The victory of socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims!”

No doubt Mercedes-Benz chuckles at the ironic cheekiness of using a Communist “man of the people” to tout a luxury product. After all, Time magazine’s encomium to Che Guevara in 1999 as “Hero and Icon of the Century” asserted that: “Nothing could be more vicariously gratifying than Che Guevara’s disdain for material comfort and everyday desires.”

Humberto Fontova

Humberto Fontova holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from Tulane University and is the author of four books including his latest, The Longest Romance; The Mainstream Media and Fidel Castro. For more information and for video clips of his Television and college speaking appearances please visit