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2 reviews

Review for Medical Education Cooperation With Cuba, Oakland, CA, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

I am an Assistant Professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. I took part in a research visit to Cuba sponsored by MEDICC in 2005 which led to several subsequent publications. In addition, one of my colleagues had a chance to learn about Cuban publishing on a MEDICC-sponsored tour in 2012. This provided us with useful contacts in Cuba.

Why do I give MEDICC a "far exceeds" rating? It is simple to go overseas, take some pictures of poor people, raise money, and then put a bandaid on things (perhaps from the window of your new Land Rover). MEDICC is particularly meritorious because it goes someplace politically unpopular and then uncovers the "inconvenient truth" that perhaps we might learn something from the Cubans. This is a very hard path to take and I commend them for taking it.

The New York Times has finally recognized that the Cuban embargo is counter-productive and that we should be collaborating with our Cuban colleagues. I think that the long, patient, and thoughtful work of MEDICC may have had something to do with this change.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

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A lot

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Role:  Professional with expertise in this field

Review for Guatemala Human Rights Commission USA, Washington, DC, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

The US has had a major impact on Guatemala's history, usually a negative one. In 1954 we overthrew the democratically elected government of Jacobo Arbenz. This led to a bloody civil war that lasted officially until 1999 and resulted in a bloody genocidal war against the Indian population in the highlands. The fallout from this war continues to haunt Guatemala today. The Guatemalan Human Right Commission is really unique in its courageous defense of human rights in Guatemala. This is dangerous work and it goes against the grain of US foreign policy. Most US efforts to help Guatemala provide some form of charity which - in my view - just perpetuates Guatemala's dependence. The Commission has helped Guatemalans get their story out to the larger world through their publications and speaking tours. They have organized to prevent the Guatemalan military (closely allied with drug traffickers) from getting US military aid, and they have provided direct solidarity to many human rights activists.

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Role:  Donor