Earlier this month I noted how both Marina Silva and Dilma Rousseff favored moving closer to the United States. Silva also favored pushing Cuba on human rights. And it seems she is making the left nervous. See this op-ed by Emir Sader, reprinted at Telesur.
It's a little strange to read, with Rousseff given the role of a radical who is fighting for Latin American independence. Silva is the U.S. toady and Cardoso clone, and the campaign is the epitome of the fight between social justice and neoliberalism. Plus, Silva is not sufficiently what you might call "pro-institutions that exclude the United States":
Las dos –Dilma y Marina– tienen significados radicalmente opuestos. Dilma, la continuidad y profundización de las trasformaciones realizadas por el gobierno Lula y por su propio gobierno. La consolidación y extensión de los acuerdos de integración regional que Brasil impulsa, del Mercosur a los Brics, pasando por Unasur, Celac, Banco del Sur y Consejo Suramericano de Defensa.
It made me wonder what the Venezuelan and Cuban governments think of this race. They may well see the stakes this high as well. Silva has in fact received pushback for her Cuba comments. Everyone is trying to guess what diplomatic direction she might take.
This reminds me a bit of other elections, such as Peru, where speculation raged about Ollanta Humala. In 2011 Greg Grandin wrote, "Add Peru to the list of Latin American countries that have turned left." That meant moving more toward Brazil and away from the United States.
In terms of foreign policy, Humala’s election is another victory for Brazil in its contest with Washington for regional influence. If Fujimori had won, she would have aligned Peru politically with Washington and economically with US and Canadian corporations.
Three years later, Peru is joining the Pacific Alliance and will be part of the Trans-Pacific Partnership,
In Brazil, we'll have to wait and see. Rousseff has rebounded so this may all be moot.