Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Cuba to create doctors' brigade

Cuban doctors sit with their backpacks ready at a moment's notice to leave for the Gulf Coast, during a speech by Cuban President Fidel Castro in Havana September 4, 2005.

By Fernando Ravsberg
BBC Mundo, Havana

Cuba's president has announced the creation of an international medical brigade to assist countries affected by natural disasters or serious epidemics.

It would initially be formed by the 1,500 doctors Cuba offered the US after Hurricane Katrina, Fidel Castro said.

The brigade has been named Henry Reeve, in honour of a US doctor who fought in Cuba's independence war. The doctors must have epidemiological knowledge, speak two languages and be in good physical condition.

The brigade is expected to be 3,300-strong as recently graduated doctors and students in their final years join.

They would assist any country that faced severe problems from hurricanes, floods or other natural disasters, President Castro said at a doctors' graduation ceremony. He added that the brigade could be used in the fight against epidemics.

If developed countries decided to fight HIV in Africa they would need doctors prepared to work under those conditions, he said.

The Cuban president said the US had not replied to his offer to send 1,500 doctors to the US. "It hurts to think about it, but maybe some of those desperate people, surrounded by water and on the verge of death, could have been saved," he said.

"That's a hard lesson for those whose false pride and erroneous concepts have driven them not to respond, even late, to our offer,'' Castro said of American officials.

Congrats also goes to Cuba for bringing home the gold medal at the World Basebal Championship as well as the women's basketball championship.


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11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very nice propaganda photo. It will be interesting to see just how many will return to Cuba after tasting the freedoms of the truly free nations of the world they would be sent to help. Wait, I forgot, the relatives of these physicians would still be in Cuba and used as leverage to prevent defection. Now if Fidel would just end the communist state, then the world would have one less dictator oppressing his own people and "THAT" would be a gesture one could truly rally behind. some people are so gullible. Maybe he can go on ABC standing next to Chavez and announce that he has evidence to prove George Bush is Satan himself. That is topic you could blog about and use for your leftist agenda as truth. HMMMMM ?

2:59 PM  
Blogger leftside said...

Thank you for that anonomous.

You might be interested to know that more than 30,000 Cuban doctors have worked abroad in all areas of the world and there is no problem with defectors. Even though they surely could make far more in a capitalist country, these are committed volunteers who want to do something for the truly disadvantaged. And after working in Haiti, Jamaica, El Salvador, the slums of Venezuela, warzones in Africa and other paradises, trust me Cubans are quite appreciative for what they have back home. Maybe that selflessness that is common in the Cuban people is what is so hard for the right wingers to understand the pride Cubans have in their country and Revolution.

4:13 PM  
Blogger jsb said...

Anonymous, good job. (claps)

These doctors will certainly defect in large numbers.

For a taste of the real cuba, I direct readers of interest to this article today which shows a blind man being persecuted at his home by hysterical school children and communist party thugs. Persecuted for writing words.


Maybe they should use some of those doctors in Cuba where they're needed. Reports of shortfalls in access are widespread.

Propaganda, indeed. Sickening...

7:49 AM  
Blogger jsb said...

More about the doctors here:


Please balance your reading of A View with this article. It helps to illuminate the charade.

7:56 AM  

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