Friday, January 04, 2019

Bolsonaro Bases

So not long after writing about how Iván Duque applauded the Monroe Doctrine, which is not something you hear from Latin America, I read that Jair Bolsonaro says he is open to having a U.S. military base in Brazil.

Say what?

Brazil's foreign policy has been the epitome of autonomy, especially in the postauthoritarian era (i.e. post-1985). Itamaraty has been all about projecting Brazil as an independent force, at times more regional and at times (especially with Lula) as more global. It has been cautious (sometimes even wary) about the U.S. without being hostile. I cannot imagine any past president saying this sort of thing.

I also don't think it will happen. Bolsonaro says he would consider it because of Russia's presence in Venezuela. My impression is also that the interviewer led him in that direction--it's not something he stated on his own, though it is true that he didn't just say "no." He also says he wants Brazil to have  “supremacy here in South America.” By virtue of U.S. troops? He also claimed vaguely that Donald Trump was interested in this sort of thing. I can see the U.S. interest but I don't see how U.S. troops helps Brazil--Russia isn't going to invade from Venezuela.

2019 is going to be a rough ride.


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