The expansionist impulses and military escalation in South America

The expansionist impulses and military escalation in South America By Fabio Reis Vianna for The Saker

In 1870, when it was devastated by the war against Prussia, the France of the deposed Emperor Napoleon III would fall into a fratricidal internal division that would take many years to heal.

The painful peace imposed by Bismarck would mark French society in that beginning of the Third Republic, where a country immersed in chaos sought a way out for its own survival.

One of the most shocking scenes of the fall of arm between Republic powers in Brazil was exposed in the first week of August, when Piauí magazine revealed that in a closed meeting with ministers – mostly men in uniform – President Bolsonaro had threatened to intervene militarily in the Supreme Court to, astonishingly, oust his judges.

After a deafening silence from both the Supreme Court and the presidencies of the House of Representatives and the Senate of the Republic, Brazil seems to be getting used to the systemic chaos resulting from the accumulation of crises that have dragged the country and its institutions into the abyss since the Color Revolution of June 2013.

More recently, the apparent gentleman’s agreement staged after the threat of resignation of the minister of economy would give the illusory impression that the incendiary president had finally been domesticated.

It wasn’t long before TV Record – belonging to a billionaire pastor, owner of the evangelical Igreja Universal -, one of the main media supporters of the Bolsonaro government, published in its main TV news an accusation by the dole maker Dario Messer that he was delivering packages of money to the members of the powerful Marinho family, owner of Rede Globo.

One of the supporters of the military regime that took root in the 1964 coup, Rede Globo, the biggest beneficiary of the old regime and more recently, the media arm of the hybrid war and lawfare processes responsible for the overthrow of the Workers’ Party and the arrest of former President Luís Inácio Lula da Silva, is today one of the biggest targets of the extreme-right government that has settled in the Planalto Palace.

Something apparently untouchable in recent decades – the intimidating power of Rede Globo hovering over institutions – seems to be breaking down, and with the arrival of the pandemic, internal divisions within the oligarchies are increasingly visible.

The fight within the Federal Prosecutor’s Office – an operational tentacle of the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) since 2014 – is an explicit example of the internal war that broke out during Jair Bolsonaro’s administration.

Within the Federal Police, this is clearly reflected in the open fight between the political police structure hitherto in the service of the Operation Car Wash, and the current political police structure now in the service of Bolsonaro’s authoritarianism in the persecution of, for example, state governors not aligned with the federal government.

In broader terms, we could interpret this internal war as a reflection of post-Pandemic systemic chaos.

Just as in the Third French Republic, which had been born from the defeat of a war, today’s Brazil, which buries the already old New Republic, has perhaps never been so divided and conflagrated. And just like that France that was entering the then new 19th century, Brazil in this early 21st century has never been in such a vulnerable position.

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