By Leni Villagomez Reeves
On April 30, at about 2 a.m., Alexander Alazo, a Texas resident and Trump supporter—he wrote “Trump 2020” on a Cuban flag—took an AK-47 and fired 32 shots at the Cuban Embassy in Washington, D.C. He didn’t hit anybody, although that was his intention; he was shouting to try to entice someone out to shoot at. Shots penetrated to the interior of the building, which was occupied, and caused damage.
The D.C. police responded promptly and arrested the shooter. The U.S. government, which has full responsibility for the safety of embassies, still hasn’t responded to diplomatic notes or condemned the attack. In fact, the next day, Mike Pompeo, Trump’s Secretary of State, again attacked Cuba’s medical missions.
Cuba’s Medical Internationalism
Many countries are now drawing on Cuba’s expertise in fighting Covid-19. At the time of this writing, Cuba had more than 1,200 medical personnel serving in more than 20 countries, including Italy. In the coming days and weeks, more Cuban medical missions will be dispatched to other countries. These missions reflect Cuba’s long history of medical internationalism.
U.S.-Cuba-Canada Collaboration in Fighting Covid-19
A campaign is under way calling for medical collaboration with Cuba, to gain access to Cuban medical expertise to assist in fighting Covid-19.
Specifically, the campaign is seeking the following:
- Allowing U.S.-Cuba-Canada medical, clinical and scientific collaboration, including inviting Cuban medical brigades to provide direct medical assistance and/or to provide advice and guidance in treating Covid-19.
- Incorporating Cuba’s Interferon Alfa 2B Recombinant in clinical trials in the United States, Canada and the WHO, and the granting by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for Cuba’s Interferon Alfa 2B Recombinant.
- Ending U.S. economic and travel sanctions against Cuba, including its extraterritorial nature and the attempts to stop all other countries accepting Cuban medical brigades and assistance, and all ongoing measures that prevent Cuba accessing and importing medical equipment and medicines to confront Covid-19.
Leni Villagomez Reeves is a local physician and activist. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out her news and views about Cuba on Facebook (fresnosolidarity/).