For Haitians, first there’s God, then Cuban doctors

Cuban health workers' remarkable contribution to recovery efforts in Haiti following the January 12 earthquake rates meager coverage by the corporate-controlled U.S. and European media. It's old news, of course, to those who follow these things. Yet recent expressions of appreciation for Cuba and Cuban doctors bear an intensity of feeling that should have pierced the censorship blanket, especially if fairness prevailed.

Following a recent meeting in Croix des Bouquets, Haiti, with the Cuban and Brazilian health ministers, Haitian President René Preval, for example, told Prensa Latina, "For the Haitians first there is God and then the Cuban doctors. And it's not just me saying that, one who is convinced, but also poor people in the communities, the very poorest citizens."

Brazilian Health Minister José Gomes said, "What Cuba does here in regard to health care is an example for the whole world, a most eloquent model of disinterested help." Edmond Mulet, the Brazilian head of the UN mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) testified to first-hand knowledge gained over several years of Cuban doctors' contributions throughout Haiti. Since the earthquake, he said, "I have run across Cuban doctors working, at times in truly terrible conditions: no water, no electricity, with only the equipment they carried with them, because the health facilities in Haiti are very, very precarious."

Prensa Latina cited the observations of veteran diplomat Marcel Young, Chile's ambassador in Haiti. "It's rewarding," he observed, "to see the Cuban doctors work because they do it with total abandonment, with limitless altruism and generosity." He recalled that Haitian political factions "attack and provoke each other, but none want the Cuban doctors to leave. They take care of them."

The story was told of a 10-year old Haitian boy Keven Cemens, who was severely injured when during the earthquake a wall fell upon him. Cuban surgeons had amputated his left leg.

All was not lost, however, because Cuban rehabilitation specialists were on hand. Responding to a reporter's question as to why he was visiting the specialists, Keven Cemens replied, "I am coming for a leg to be able to play football." He received a prosthetic leg, but expressed surprise on learning that to accommodate growth a new one would be made for him and provided periodically.

Less surprising for many Cuba watchers is that just as Cuban health workers attend to prevention to ward off potential needs for curative care, they follow up on the latter, when appropriate, with rehabilitation. And the record shows that Cuban medical assistance worldwide involves more than beating an early exit after emergencies have passed.

Cuban medical collaboration with Haiti did begin in response to death and destruction caused by Hurricane George in 1998. But almost 12 years later, teams of Cuban health specialists are still there. The services they provide are comprehensive and farsighted enough that new left legs can be envisioned for a young football player.



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  • Our Cubans(one prays we have an iota of the moral and spiritual fiber to claim them)practice systematically what most "followers of God"only mouth.
    Haitians-the lineage of the immortal W.E.B. Du Bois,yet show his and their great heritage-Africa.
    Cubans-who have also honored their African heritage in more ways than one-their heroic aid to South Africa through Namibia in a time of need,their obliteration of racism on their magnificent little island,their selfless,medical aid to Haiti since '98 and their world renowned medical corps,which have saved lives,all over the world,giving it a model of how humanity should conduct itself in an authentic human world.
    The anti-racist,anti-imperialist,socialist Fidel Ruz Castro,who defended the great African American Communist,Henry Winston,from Mississippi,as the racist imperialists of the'50s and 60s reared their deformed,demented,insane,cowardly head to destroy the CPUSA,to reverse humanity's triumphant forward march,eviscerating Winston's health,as it had the great Paul Leroy Robeson's health,to ply its death warrant on the children of Africa-Africa's finest,Africa's working-class,Africa's communists.
    May we all emulate the God that socialist Cuba manifest,in this Haitian revelation,putting God first,with its supreme socialist service.

    Posted by E.E.W. Clay, 05/04/2010 7:27am (6 years ago)

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