The Lesson of Brazil

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A Socialist Project e-bulletin ... No. 1701 ... November 6, 2018
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The Lesson of Brazil

Pierre Beaudet

The catastrophe -- expected and foreseeable -- has happened. This immense country, with its 200 million inhabitants, is now in darkness. At best, it will take a decade or two to emerge.

It is of course very early to predict what will happen, but the election of the fascist Jair Bolsonaro raises two possibilities. The "optimists," if one can put it that way, think that a kind of Colombian-style regime will emerge: authoritarian, militarized, using targeted repression against certain sectors of the popular movement with the consent if not support of a vast sector of the middle and popular classes. In Colombia, under Álvaro Uribe’s rule, the state was reinforced and restabilized, benefiting from the militarist excesses of... the FARC. Today, Colombia emerges as a small regional power with a façade of democracy, a fragmented opposition, and a solid alliance between the various reactionary factions, not to mention the unfailing support of the United States. In that country they assassinate, kidnap, destroy the opposition, but they leave it a small place in a well-organized system that rules out any change. Has history come to an end in Colombia? Of course not, it never does. Also, Brazil is not Colombia. The popular movement did not become militarized. It still enjoys broad electoral support (45% of the votes), foundations in the institutions, states (provinces) and municipalities. All that cannot be destroyed overnight. However…

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