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Bolsonaro’s fear of the left is cloaked in anger and threats

With threats and attacks, the President of Brazil carves his way through the presidency of Brazil, where he reveals the obvious weakness that makes him distrust everything and everyone.


Jair Bolsonaro. Photo: Jakob Reimann. Bolsonaro Brasilien. Based on Agência Brasil Fotografias, Flickr, licensed under CC BY 2.0 (edited by Jakob Reimann, JusticeNow!). License Creative Commons

 Osvaldo Cardosa

Far-right politician Jair Bolsonaro recently threatened to remove Brazil from the Mercosur trade bloc ahead of an eventual triumph for presidential candidate Alberto Fernández in October, who is favourite to win at the polls over current president Mauricio Macri.

Speaking to the press in Brasilia, the ex-military officer stated that “the presidential candidate, whose pre-candidate for vice president is senator and ex-president Cristina Krichner, has expressed that ex-president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s imprisonment is unjust, and that he wants to revise the terms of Mercosur. Economic Minister Paulo Gedes has already said that if any problems arise, Brazil will leave Mercosur.”

Guedes previously stated that, “If Cristina Kirchner comes and closes the economy, we will leave Mercosur.”

Leader of the party Frente de Todos, Fernández won a victory over Macri in the Simultaneous and Mandatory Open Primary elections (known as “PASO”) in the neighbouring South American country, gaining 47.66% of citizen votes.

Pedro. By @thundermagazine. Flickr – License Creative Commons

According to preliminary results, Fernández obtained 11,428,000 votes with 99.37% of the ballots counted, while Macri, of the party Juntos por el Cambio and the favourite in the markets, obtained 32.09%.

According to news outlets, an anonymous source at the Planalto Palace (headquarters of Argentina’s Executive Branch), indicated that Brazil wants to advance in its agenda with Argentina, regardless of who is in the Casa Rosada.

It is still unclear what alternatives are being studied. Although Bolsonaro’s advisors report that everything is under consideration, including the possibility that Brazil could leave the block if relations with a Peronist government affect the national economic agenda, many rule out such an extreme hypothesis.

Colleagues of the former army captain advocate a Mercosur trade bloc that is less “political and focused on an economic agenda.”

Despite this statement, other commentators say that behind Bolsonaro’s threat lies fear, as a triumph for the left in Argentina could influence Brazil’s political arena.

In this regard, Brazilian analyst Alberto Pfeifer told Argentine newspaper La Nación that Bolsonaro is criticising the election results because “in addition to having a populist neighbour around the corner, Fernández’s victory represents a hope that similar parties could return to power in Brazil, which is his worst nightmare”.

Photo: Pixabay

The publication indicates that “the nightmare would be even greater if the leftist governments of Uruguay and Bolivia remain in power in October, and if “correísmo” imitates Kirchnerism and returns to power in 2021. The left’s regional hub will thus be reconfigured.”

According to La Nación, for now the Workers Party of Brazil “does not seem to have regained the power displayed by the Frente de Todos party on Sunday 11 August. But Bolsonaro does face a similar situation to Macri; his approval ratings are low and, despite his promises, the Brazilian economy is heading for a new recession. Added to the dissolution of the centre parties, this panorama could point to the resurrection of the left…”

Other threats

The searchlights still remain focused on Bolsonaro, who also threatened American journalist and lawyer Glenn Greenwald with prison. Greenwald is the editor and co-founder of digital site The Intercept, which has uncovered the conversations, audios, chats and messages exchanged since 9 June between ex-judge and justice minister Sérgio Moro and prosecutors of the Lava Jato anti-corruption operation.

Photo: Pixabay

Without departing from his defiant speech, Bolsonaro also described the official documentation on the violations and crimes perpetrated by the dictatorship (1964-1985) as a lie. This came shortly after threatening the victim’s son with revealing “the truth” about the death of his father, who, according to official investigations, was killed by military command.

Sometime later, he threatened communists and leftist parties in general, with the intention of fostering intolerance and hatred, a recurring practice of his authoritarian escalation, denounced the news portal Vermelho. (PL)

(Translated by Lucy Daghorn – Email:

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