by Alfredo Saad-Filho
Progress in Political Economy | April 15, 2020
Suddenly, we find ourselves in a transformed world. Empty streets, closed shops, unusually clear skies, and climbing death tolls: something unprecedented is unfolding before our eyes.
News about the economy is alarming almost everywhere: the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the sharpest and deepest economic contraction in the history of capitalism. To paraphrase The Communist Manifesto, all that was solid has melted into air: ‘globalisation’ has gone into reverse; long supply chains, that were previously the only ‘rational’ way to organise production, have collapsed and hard borders are back; trade has declined drastically, and international travel has been severely constrained. In a matter of days, tens of millions of workers became unemployed, and millions of businesses lost their employees, customers, suppliers and credit lines. Several economies expect contractions of GDP to be measured in double digits, and a long line of sectors beg governments for a bailout. In the UK alone, banks, railways, airlines, airports, the tourism sector, charities, the entertainment sector and universities are on the verge of bankruptcy, not to speak of the displaced workers and the (nominally) self-employed, who lost everything because of an economic shock that has not yet even been felt in full.Read More »
Cuban doctors head to Italy to battle coronavirus, Physicians Weekly, Mar 23, 2020.
Beginning in December 1951, Ernesto “Che” Guevara took a nine-month break from medical school to travel by motorcycle through Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia, and Venezuela. One of his goals was gaining practical experience with leprosy. On the night of his twenty-fourth birthday, Che was at La Colonia de San Pablo in Peru swimming across the river to join the lepers. He walked among six hundred lepers in jungle huts looking after themselves in their own way.
Che would not have been satisfied to just study and sympathize with them—he wanted to be with them and understand their existence. Being in contact with people who were poor and hungry while they were sick transformed Che. He envisioned a new medicine, with doctors who would serve the greatest number of people with preventive care and public awareness of hygiene. A few years later, Che joined Fidel Castro’s 26th of July Movement as a doctor and was among the eighty-one men aboard the Granma as it landed in Cuba on December 2, 1956.Read More »
by Linda Pentz Gunter
Morning Star | July 14, 2020
CUBA’S Henry Reeve Medical Brigade of doctors, nurses and public health specialists, currently engaged in the global fight against Covid-19, has now delivered support to 27 countries.
Indeed, over the past 15 years, Cuban doctors have treated an estimated 3.5 million patients abroad, while offering free medical training to overseas students in Cuba.
Their current efforts and long history of humanitarian aid — most notably in the successful fight against Ebola in West Africa, in what was originally tagged a “suicidal mission” — has prompted a campaign calling for the Brigade to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.Read More »
A Journal of People report
Countercurrents | July 12, 2020
According to press reports and the statement of his family, the renowned Telugu poet and writer, P. Varavara Rao is extremely ill in Taloja jail. He is suffering from low levels of sodium and potassium as diagnosed by the JJ Hospital, Mumbai, where his treatment was abruptly terminated and he was taken back to Taloja Jail in Navi Mumbai. This is a life threatening situation for someone who is 81 years of age, and already suffers from high blood pressure and heart conditions.Read More »
People’s Union For Civil Liberties | July 13, 2020
Vara Vara Rao is a nationally renowned Telugu poet and intellectual who has been incarcerated since August, 2018 in the Bhima Koregaon case. He is considered one of the best critics in Telugu literature and has taught Telugu literature to undergraduate and graduate students for about 40 years. He founded Srujana (creation), a forum for modern literature in Telugu in 1966, which was a quarterly and successfully converted into a monthly and continued till 1992. 15 poetry collections of his own have been published, besides a number of poetry anthologies which he edited.Read More »
Countercurrents | July 14, 2020
Ever since the Bollywood star tested positive for COVID 19, the social media is flooded with messages for his speedy recovery.
Amitabh Bachchan and three generations of his family, including son Abhishek and daughter-in-law Aishwarya Rai, and their eight-year-old daughter, were tested positive. This has obviously alarmed their fan following, as husband and wife too, like the family patriarch, have acted in the film industry.
The development has been widely reported in the international media, including CBC and Global, and Bachchan’s admirers are publicly praying for his well-being.Read More »
by MA Krishna
Countercurrents | July 12, 2020
Prominent communist revolutionary (CR) leader of India, DV Rao (Devulapalli Venkateswara Rao 1917 June 1-1984 July 12), was known for his unique role in leading the historic Telangana People’s Armed Struggle (1940-51). Every year in July he, and his inseparable comrade-in-arms T. Nagi Reddy (TN 1917-1976), who also died in the same month, are remembered by thousands of people through various programs in Telangana and AP.