Bill Clinton calls US efforts against Ebola a 'good beginning'

Former President Bill Clinton said the United States was a "little behind the curve" in efforts to combat the deadly Ebola outbreak. The Clinton Global Initiative is working with the US and other aid organizations to ship medical supplies to West Africa.

Jacquelyn Martin/AP
Former President Bill Clinton speaks at the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program Launch, Monday, Sept. 8, at The Newseum in Washington. On Saturday, Clinton said the world will needed to do more to fight Ebola.

New initiatives from the United States, Britain, France and other countries to help fight Ebola marked a "good beginning," former President Bill Clinton said on Saturday, but said the world will need to do more.

"We're still a little behind the curve but we're getting there," Clinton told reporters in a conference call, a day before his charity, the Clinton Global Initiative, was set to begin its 10th annual meeting in New York.

"And we have to deal with trying to identify and isolate the cases in the Congo and especially Nigeria where there are so many people," he said.

Since the current outbreak was first detected in March, Ebola has infected at least 5,357 people, according to the World Health Organization, mostly in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. It has also spread to Senegal and Nigeria. The virus has killed an estimated 2,630 people.

CGI announced on Saturday that an airlift it had coordinated along with other U.S. aid organizations was shipping 100 tons of medical supplies to West Africa to fight Ebola. The charity said it was the single largest emergency shipment from the United States to West Africa to date.

The airlift was scheduled to depart New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport on Saturday afternoon.

In a major expansion of the U.S. effort against Ebola, President Barack Obama this week announced that the United States would send 3,000 troops to West Africa help tackle the outbreak, including a major deployment in Liberia.

"We're going to have to do whatever it takes to contain the epidemic," Clinton said of Ebola.

"It's a sprawling, growing thing. But at least they're putting the infrastructure in and have shown a willingness to put some money behind it, and I think it's a good beginning."

Reporting by Caren Bohan; Editing by Leslie Adler

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.