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October 15, 1898


JAMA. 1898;XXXI(16):918-920. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.92450160037002o

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The Cuban and Porto Rican invasions have confirmed the experience of the past in showing that the greatest horrors of war are caused by disease and its consequences rather than the implements of destruction. If the battle-grounds are in the extreme north or south, climate enters as an important factor in decimating the ranks and in increasing the sufferings of the contending armies. A war of invasion requires more preparation, foresight and forethought on the part of those who plan and conduct the campaign than one of defense, a fact we have been painfully made aware of during the last two months. The more remote the seat of conflict, the more difficult the task of providing food and clothing for the army, and the more serious becomes the problem of properly caring for the sick and wounded, and the greater becomes the difficulty in returning the survivors to their homes.

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