Le Monde Diplomatique
A War Chest by Kofi Annan
One of my great concerns as a Secretary-General of the United Nations was the crushing burden of infectious diseases on developing countries.
Ten years ago very few people in the developing world were receiving AIDS treatment. They knew that, while AIDS had ceased to be a death sentence in rich countries, they themselves had little reason to hope, because the drugs were just too expensive for the developing world. I recall a visit to a hospital in Maputo, where a dying woman looked me straight in the eye and asked if I could help her. She knew that medication could save her but, as she was poor, for her the disease was a death sentence. I will never forget that look, which was much more powerful than her words.