I will not
refer to Bush's health and education, but to that of his neighbors.It was not an improvised declaration. The AP
agency tells us what his opening words were: "Tenemoscorazonesgrandes en estepaís" (We have big
hearts in this country); he said this in Spanish in front of 250
representatives of private and religious groups, foundations and NGOs who had
come to Washington with all expenses paid by his government.Of these, some 100 came from the United States.
meeting, called the White House Conference on the Americas, is part of the ideas outlined by Bush as
he began a tour of five Latin American countries at the beginning of March
about what his government was hoping to do for the region in the short time
still remaining of his term in office.”
called the conference in order to discuss several subjects, especially
education and health.‘It’s … in the
interests of the United States that our neighborhood be healthy and educated',
he said in improvised declarations during a chat with six of the attendees,
from Guatemala, the United States, Brazil, Haiti and Mexico, who sat at the
table with him in a colloquium”, the press agency added.
some incredible things, like “the hard work we’re doing in the
spoke, as did the Secretary of the Treasury, the Under Secretary of State for
Western Hemisphere Affairs and the Under Secretary of State for Public
Affairs.Together with them, several
members of the Cabinet chaired the working groups in which the meeting was
arranged.They all talked until they
were blue in the face.
mentioned that Bush had created a training center in Panama that graduated more than 100 doctors from
six Central American countries. They very emphatically referred to the Comfort, “one of the best medical ships
in the world that had just called on port in Panama after visiting Guatemala”.
dedicated 55 minutes of his time to this activity which took place in a hotel
in the city of Arlington, Virginia, on the outskirts of WashingtonD.C.”
bold as you like, Secretary of State Condolezza Rice,
joined the voices to speak about Cuba.
to another news agency, when our Council of State, complying with
constitutional norms, had just called the elections, she declared that “the United States hopes that the Cubans themselves will
decide their future”, and she added: “Washington will not tolerate the transition from one
dictator to another”.
opening speech, Bush addressed really unusual concepts for the head of a
planetary global empire, very conscious of his power and of his personal role,
reported in detail by the Spanish press agency EFE: “The President of the United States, George W. Bush, today urged the
governments of Latin
America to be
honest, transparent and open.” (…) “The leader affirmed that societies which
are open and transparent are those which will lead to hopeful tomorrows.”
governments to be honest and transparent (…) We reject
the notion that it’s okay for there to be corruption in government…”
also in our interest to help a neighbor in need.It renews our soul.It lifts our collective spirit.I believe to whom much is given, much is
required.We’ve been given a lot as a
nation, and therefore, I believe we’re required to help,” he insisted.
that he is lying and that his tall tales are hard to swallow, but he doesn’t
care.He is confident that if he repeats
it a thousand times, many will finally believe him.Why so much trickery?What essentially torments him?When did all this rushing come up?
discovering that the economic and political system of his empire cannot compete
with Cuba in vital services, such as healthcare and education,
although this country has been attacked and blockaded for almost 50 years.Everyone knows that the United States’ specialty concerning education is the
brain drain.The International Labor
Organization has indicated that “47 percent of people born abroad that complete
their Doctorate in the United States stay in that country.”
another example of the plunder: “There are more Ethiopian physicians in Chicago than in all of Ethiopia.”
In Cuba, where healthcare is not a commodity, we
can do things that Bush cannot even dream of.
Third World countries do not have the resources to
set up scientific research centers, while Cuba has created these even if her own
professionals have often been enticed and encouraged to defect.
Our Yes I Can method of teaching people to
read and write is today available to all Latin American countries, free of
charge, and the countries that choose to use the program receive support to
adapt it to their own characteristics and to produce the printed materials and
the corresponding videos.
such as Bolivia are implementing the program in Spanish,
Quechua and Aymara.The numbers of those who have learned to read and write there in just
one year exceed the number of those who have been taught to read and write by
the empire in all of Latin America, if indeed there is anyone.And
I am not speaking about other countries like Venezuela which has accomplished veritable heroic
deeds in education in a very short time.
Yes I Can is of benefit to other
societies outside the Western Hemisphere.Suffice it to say that New Zealand is using the program to eradicate
illiteracy in their Maori population.
having one training center for medical professionals in Central America, which
has trained about 100 –and we’re glad for this-- our country today has tens of
thousands of students from Latin America and the Caribbean on full scholarships
who spend six years training as doctors in Cuba, free of charge. Of course, we
do not exclude any American youth who take their education very seriously.
cooperate with Venezuela in the education of more than 20,000
youths, who study medicine and train in clinics in the poor neighborhoods,
tutored by Cuban specialists, so that they can get acquainted with their future
and difficult job.
The Comfort, with over 800 people on board,
that is, medical staff and crew, will not be able to look after great numbers
of people.It is impossible to carry out
medical programs episodically.Physical
therapy, for example, in many cases requires months of work.Cuba provides permanent services to people in
polyclinics and well-equipped hospitals, and the patients can be cared for any
time of day or night. We have also trained the necessary physical therapy
surgery also requires special skills. In our country ophthalmologic centers
perform more than 50,000 eye surgeries on Cubans each year and look after 27
kinds of diseases.There are no waiting
lists for cornea transplants which need special arrangements.Let an active investigation be done in the United States and you will see how many people really
need to be operated on there; since they have never been examined by an
ophthalmologist they will attribute their eye problems to other causes and run
the risk of becoming blind or of having their vision seriously impaired.You would find out that there are millions.
abovementioned figure I did not include the hundreds of thousands of Latin
Americans and Caribbean people some of whom are operated on in Cuba, but most in their respective countries,
by Cuban ophthalmologists.In Bolivia alone, they are more than 100,000 each
year. In this instance, Bolivian doctors educated in the Latin American School
of Medicine (ELAM) take part in the surgeries alongside our
see how the Comfort will make out in Haiti, providing health services for a week.
There, in 123 of the country’s 134 communes there are Cuban doctors working
alongside ELAM graduates, or Haitian students in the
last year of medical school, fighting AIDS and various tropical diseases.
problem is that the United States cannot do what Cuba is doing.On the contrary, it brutally pressures the manufacturing companies of
the excellent medical equipment that is supplied to our country to prevent them
from replacing certain computer programs or some spare parts that are under United States patents. I could cite concrete cases and
the names of the companies.It is
disgusting, even though we have solutions that make us more invulnerable in
six months ago Bush had not yet invented the idea of making fuel production
universal, from foodstuff inside and outside the United States.Those of us who are aware of the value of fats and protein foods for
human nutrition know what the consequences are for pregnant women, children,
teenagers, adults and the elderly if they lack these.The brunt of the scarcity will fall on the shoulders
of the least developed countries, in other words, on the largest part of
humanity. It will surprise no one that this will be accompanied by increased
prices for basic foodstuffs and social instability. Yesterday, Friday 13, the
price of oil was 79.18 US dollars a barrel; another consequence of the money
rush and the war in Iraq.
hours ago, the United States Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff, said that “he had the gut feeling that a
terrorist attack could happen in the country during the summer”. The Secretary
of State, and subsequently the President of the United States himself, said something similar.But while they were giving information about
a potential risk, they were also taking great pains to calm public opinion.
government of the United States sees and hears all, with or without legal
authority. Furthermore, it possesses numerous intelligence and
counterintelligence services that are provided with copious economic resources
for espionage.It can obtain all the
security information it needs without kidnapping, torturing or murdering
persons in secret prisons.Everybody
knows the real economic purposes pursued through world violence and force.They can prevent any attack on their people,
unless there is some imperial need to deliver a bang so that they can carry on
with and justify the brutal war which has been declared against the culture,
religion, economy and independence of other peoples.
Sunday, is Children’s Day.I think of
them as I write this reflection.I
dedicate it to them.