Cuba Enslaves Doctors Fighting Ebola
One curious story mixed in with the frenzied media Ebola coverage reported that Cuba (FIDEL CASTRO’S CUBA!) was sending doctors and other medical professionals to Africa to help fight the disease. Bravo Cuba? Naturally the thought arose that Cuba was doing this for political public relations purposes. The true reason is that Cuba was actually doing it for monetary gain:
Cuba is winning accolades for its international “doctor diplomacy,” in which it sends temporary medical professionals abroad—ostensibly to help poor countries battle disease and improve health care. But the doctors are not a gift from Cuba. Havana is paid for its medical missions by either the host country, in the case of Venezuela, or by donor countries that send funds to the World Health Organization. The money is supposed to go to Cuban workers’ salaries. But neither the WHO nor any host country pays Cuban workers directly. Instead the funds are credited to the account of the dictatorship, which by all accounts keeps the lion’s share of the payment and gives the worker a stipend to live on with a promise of a bit more upon return to Cuba. Cuba’s Slave Trade in Doctors By MARY ANASTASIA O’GRADY Wall Street Journal 11/9/14
It gets worse:
Making medical professionals an export product is provoking a doctor shortage in Cuba, which is exacerbating widespread privation in health care. A humane government might turn its attention to this domestic misery, but there’s no money in that. Instead Cuba sells the labor of health professionals abroad even in the midst of persistent dengue and cholera outbreaks on the island. Id.
The lesson: any time you hear of Cuba doing “good,” listen to that voice in the back of your head asking “what’s REALLY going on here?” – Grizzly Joe