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The U.S. and the Fight Against AIDS

July 24, 2004

James K. Glassman:

Never mind that US taxpayers will provide more money this year to fight AIDS than the governments of the rest of the world combined. Never mind that US research and development has given the world the drugs that prevent a diagnosis of HIV infection from becoming a death sentence.

Americans are the villains. US officials are shouted down at press conferences. Journalists stampede to childish demonstrations featuring placards of President George W. Bush smeared with blood.

What Americans are doing to fight AIDS in Africa – an effort I saw first-hand last December – is inspirational, even breathtaking. But in Bangkok there is no word of thanks to the US or to Bush, far and away the world’s top leader in the battle against the disease.

Americans are inventing the drugs, building the hospitals, training the healthcare workers, caring for the patients, nurturing the orphans and providing the hard cash. Americans are nuts, however, to walk around with a “kick me” sign on their backs. The next one of these meetings is set for Toronto, August 13-16, 2006. That week, Americans should be in Africa and Asia helping people with AIDS, not in Canada fending off insults from ingrates and morons.

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