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Notes Preface 1. “La participación cubana en el enfrentamiento al ébola en África Occidental no es un hecho aislado.” See Juventud Rebelde, September 12, 2014. This is the transcript of the joint press conference between the director general of the WHO and the Cuban minister of public health which took place in Geneva. Introduction: Setting the Scene 1. Fonticoba, “Cuba tiene médicos por todo el mundo.” 2. Vázquez García, “La escuela médica más avanzada del mundo.” 3. Data found at An article in 2013 provided slightly different information, noting that Cuba had more than 85,000 doctors, or a doctor for every 137 people. See “Más de 37000 cubanos y 10000 extranjeros estudian medicina.” 4. Collazo Montano, “Cuba, por incrementar los servicios médicos.” 5. Data found at CIA, World Factbook. 6. Souers, “Cuba Leads the World in Lowest Patient per Doctor Ratio.” 7. Fariñas Acosta, “Cuba ha demostrado que es posible tener salud y bienestar para todos.” 8. Data from the National Office of Statistics, Havana, found at esp/19_tabla_cuadro.htm. 9. De la Osa, “A las aulas casi 86 mil estudiantes de Ciencias Médicas.” 10. Souers, “Cuba Leads the World in Lowest Patient per Doctor Ratio.” 11. “La Salud Pública cubana apuesta a más calidad y más eficiencia.” 12. It is worth noting that this first medical mission took place at a time of social polarization in Cuba, with a significant number of the urban bourgeoisie leaving. This included medical personnel, and by the end of 1961 almost half of Cuba’s 6,000 doctors had left the island. 13. José Manzaneda, “Why You Will Not Be Told about This Miracle.” 14. The preamble of the 1976 constitution (amended in 2002) refers to the need for “proletarian internationalism, by the fraternal friendship, aid, cooperation, and solidarity of the peoples of the world, especially those of Latin America and the Caribbean.” 15. “Speech Given by Dr. Fidel Castro Ruz, President of the Republic of Cuba, at the Celebration of the 40th Anniversary of INDER and the Dedication of the International School of Physical Education and Sports, on February 23, 2001.” 16. Riverry, “Misión Milagro de dos fronteras.” 17. As was noted in a recent article, “In essence it comes down to political will, combined with a determination to provide support—cooperation—to the world’s impoverished and marginalized populations. . . . It requires great long-term vision, a sense of humanitarian ethics, and a commitment to the well-being of others. It means placing value on human capital rather than in the marketplace.” Kirk and Walker, “Moral Medicine, the Cuban Way,” 27. 18. Delgado Legón, “Massive Graduation of Doctors in Cuba.” 19. Kirk and Kirk, “Cuban Medical Aid to Haiti: One of the World’s Best-Kept Secrets.” Chapter 1. Origins and Evolution: From “Beggar’s Helper” to a “White-Jacketed Army” 1. Information taken from the CIA’s World Factbook. 2. See the section on the Cuban economy in the summary published by the Heritage Foundation at 3. Feinberg, “Reaching Out,” 14. 4. Domínguez, To Make a World Safe for Revolution, 115, 172. 5. “During the 1970s and continuing into the mid-1980s, the combination of these two elements—establishing a highly lucrative coalition with the socialist bloc that also included large infusions of military aid and expanding dramatically its relations with developing nations throughout the Southern Hemisphere in an effort to bolster its Third World leadership aspirations—was the defining hallmark both of Havana’s overall foreign policy and of its counterdependency agenda.” See Erisman, Cuba’s Foreign Relations in a Post-Soviet World, 78. 6. Domínguez, To Make a World Safe for Revolution, 7. 7. Erisman, Cuba’s Foreign Relations in a Post-Soviet World, 98–99. 8. Ibid., 221. 9. Cited in Reed, “Cuban Medical Teams in Global Disaster Relief.” 10. “The majority of the doctors in Algeria were French, and many have now left the country. The population of Algeria is four million greater than that of Cuba, and there are many diseases that have been left by colonialism. Yet they have only a third—and maybe less—of the doctors that we do. In matters of health their situation is really tragic.” “That’s why I said to the students that we need 50 doctors to volunteer to go to...


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