Don't Mention It, Por Favor
Six hundred million people live in Latin America and the Caribbean. That’s twice the population of the USA. At the end of January, the presidents of each and every one of those nations met in Havana to forge greater economic and political unity amongst themselves. Cuba was not only the host but the outgoing president of CELAC, Spanish for the Community of Latin American and Caribbean Countries. The U.S. and Canada, regarded as imperialists by one and all, were pointedly not invited.
This major summit received not a mention in the NY Times. (The link here is from the UK press service, Reuters). However, the Feb. 5 Times did give coverage in its international section to the defection of one, just one, of the 5,378 Cuban doctors hired by Brazil over the last year to provide health services to the poor. This was a perfect example of the money media policy of either slagging or ignoring the independent nations south of the border.
The collapse of the Soviet empire 25 years ago came as a big surprise to our pols and press. Likewise, the onrushing transformation of Latin America from Tio Gringo’s backyard into a free and independent community of nations is having a hard time sinking into the consciousness of such as the editors of the Times, who apparently believed that a story about a Cuban doctor who would rather live in Brazil was of more interest and import to their readers than the quakings of the vast continent next door to ours. How is it that we spend so much on intelligence to receive stupidity in return?