Brazil’s far-right government requested the return of thousands of Cuban doctors to help fight the coronavirus. Months ago, President Jair Bolsonaro smeared the doctors as “terrorists” and expelled them.
By Ben Norton
The coronavirus pandemic has overwhelmed the health infrastructure of countries around the world. Desperate to contain the deadly virus, hard-hit countries, including even rich European nations like Italy and Britain, have reached out for expert medical help from Cuba, China, and Venezuela.
Even Brazil, currently under the control of a far-right administration that has joined the US in demonizing Cuba’s socialist government, has fallen back on the small nation for much-needed medical support — requesting help from the very same Cuban doctors it expelled months ago.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has repeatedly called for the restoration of the military dictatorship, threatened his political opponents with violence, and backed terrorist attacks on Venezuela.
Bolsonaro has also taken aim at Cuba, praising the far-right military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet for supposedly preventing Chile from becoming like Havana.
Before Bolsonaro was elected president in 2018, 10,000 doctors Cuban doctors were inside Brazil, working in some of the poorest, most remote regions of the country. Their assistance arrived thanks to an agreement between Havana and the country’s left-wing Workers’ Party government, which sought Cuban help to treat those that the Brazilian health system had long failed to reach….