The Boston Globe has been covering the arrival and treatment of injured Libyan fighters.
In the first installment, the Spaulding Hospital president expressed concern about making the wounded men comfortable in a new culture — especially as they were going to have to pass through Salem at Halloween. Salem, you know, is full of witches in October, and witches aren’t the half of it.
As Billy Baker wrote of the injured on October 30, “They took off from a desert and landed in a numbing rain with snow in the forecast. And then, if that weren’t strange enough, they were taken to Salem. On Halloween weekend.
“For the 22 Libyan fighters airlifted to Logan International Airport yesterday, the first of the injured to arrive in the United States for medical treatment after the overthrow of Moammar Khadafy’s government less than two weeks ago, it was a day of great joy and great culture shock.
“The injured men, who ranged in age from 17 to 46, were whisked away in ambulances shortly after landing …
“The men are here for treatment at the Spaulding Hospital North Shore facility in Salem, which has been preparing for their arrival by training staff in the customs and religious practices of the patients. A prayer room was being designed with the help of an imam; doctors and nurses will wear name tags in Arabic; and a team of translators trained in medical terms has been brought in to explain the medications and therapies.” Read more.
In a November 10 follow-up, the fighters praised their warm reception. “Lying in bed, the 37-year-old Naser said he is grateful for the opportunity to receive medical attention in the United States, and was surprised by the warm reception he has received.
“ ‘It has been a kind and very sincere welcome,’ said Naser. “It has changed completely my vision of America.’ ”