NY Times: Ebola an ‘Urgent Reminder’ U.S. Should Open Relations with Cuba

The New York Times editorial board has found another reason the U.S. should lift its longtime embargo against Cuba: Ebola.

The Times wrote in praise of Cuba’s aggressive response to quarantining the virus in Africa, where there has been an epidemic, and said the U.S. should follow suit.

From the editorial:

It is a shame that Washington, the chief donor in the fight against Ebola, is diplomatically estranged from Havana, the boldest contributor. In this case the schism has life-or-death consequences, because American and Cuban officials are not equipped to coordinate global efforts at a high level. This should serve as an urgent reminder to the Obama administration that the benefits of moving swiftly to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba far outweigh the drawbacks. …

Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday praised “the courage of any health care worker who is undertaking this challenge,” and made a brief acknowledgment of Cuba’s response. As a matter of good sense and compassion, the American military, which now has about 550 troops in West Africa, should commit to giving any sick Cuban access to the treatment center the Pentagon built in Monrovia and to assisting with evacuation.

The Times called for an end to the embargo just two weeks ago, though not because of Ebola but because it would be a chance for President Obama to “make history.”

[Photo via Shutterstock]

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