Cuba is a world leader in hurricane preparedness and recovery. What can we learn from the small island nation?
Along with the horrifying images of floating corpses, devastating flooding, and people trapped on makeshift islands, another indelible image has emerged from the Hurricane Harvey catastrophe. In the midst of disaster, locals began sharing pictures of hundreds of fire ants forming chain-linked rafts to float on water and protect their queen, eggs, and young.
This striking display of insect solidarity in the face of calamity seemed to contrast with the human response to Harvey, which, however valiant, appeared to remind us of the apparent futility of human resistance in the face of acts of God.
But what if I told you there was a country that has survived its last seventeen hurricanes with only thirty-five deaths? What if that country demonstrated exactly the kind of society-wide solidarity we envy the fire ants for? And what if that country had a GDP that was a fraction of the United States’?
There is such a country: Cuba.