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Lava Jato broke Brazil, Ukraine is responsible for the war: how history is rewritten

O ex-presidente Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, que disse à revista Time que Zelensky é “tão responsável” pela guerra na Ucrânia quanto Putin

Former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who told Time magazine that Zelensky is “as responsible” for the war in Ukraine as Putin| Photo: Fernando Frazão/Agência Brasil

Just to demarcate a place and time, we can say that the story began like this and for Brazil: the bad guys are the good guys and the good guys are the bad guys. To get former president Lula out of jail and give him back the chance to do what he always did, his lawyers rescued an academic thesis according to which the judicial system can be used as a weapon to persecute enemies, opponents and even countries. As part of the efforts, they even founded an NGO to give nobility to the less-than-noble mission. His original attempts at rewriting history were almost always ridiculous. But everything changed after the espionage against Lava Jato. The developments are already known and do not need to be repeated.

The rewriting of the Lava Jato’s history created a Brazil where there is corruption, but there are no corrupters and corrupt people. In the prevailing history, it is not criminals and their crimes that have anchored Brazil in backwardness, preventing the country from taking advantage of some of the most auspicious moments of global growth. For the narrative that replaces the facts, what almost broke Brazil was the fight against corruption. A logic according to which chemotherapy, not pathology, kills the cancer patient.

The magazine Time of this This week gave ex-president Lula a platform to put a little more paint on the story about his schizophrenic and opportunistic version. Besides, obviously, putting himself on the altar of politics, Lula showed that, when he is allowed to speak, his idiosyncrasies are so portentous that there is no friendly pen capable of neutralizing them.

You know that guy who justifies sexual harassment or even rape saying “but who told her to dress like that?”. So, from the top of the altar that the Time2022 mounted for Lula, he was not ashamed to say that no one makes war alone and that Ukraine is as responsible as Putin. More specifically, he blamed Volodymyr Zelenskyy for the conflict.

A Russian invasion of Ukraine, by the way, has served as a pretext for a series of atrocities: Hitler was Jewish. Putin is a conservative. The West is infested with globalist autocracies wanting to dominate Brazil. Jews are Nazis. The previous list gushed from the source of Russian propaganda and disinformation and as much as there are those who try to explain – as here in this column -, there is no one who solves it.

Not long ago, Bolsonaristas were proud to display the flag of Ukraine (which criminalized communism), the United States and Israel as symbols of their convictions, along the lines of “our flag will never be red” and “Brazil will not be a Venezuela”. Things have changed so much since the beginning of the war and the flood of propaganda they absorbed that it would not be absurd if Russian and even Iranian flags appeared in the next demonstrations as symbols of anti-globalist resistance.

A tour of social media gives clues to this. Animosity towards the United States seems to be taking shape as a result of an irrational reaction to the end of the Trump administration and the disaster that is the relations between Brazil and the United States in the Biden era. There are absurdities such as the assertion that the ayatollahs’ regime is peaceful and that Brazil sooner or later needs to be with them to protect itself from the malignant influence of the United States.

There is a flood of nonsense, for example, saying that Brazil is the next target of the US and NATO invasion. People who take themselves seriously, have hundreds of thousands of followers, reproducing the same bullshit for the Bolsonarista base and for the Lula base. The proof would be the visit to Brazil by Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland, for the meetings to review the bilateral Brazil-USA agenda, which took place last month. For Russians, Nuland is a kind of Thanos. Wherever she goes, there is no government left standing. The reason for the smear campaign is due to the fact that she was the undersecretary for Europe when, in 768, the Ukrainians put out then President Viktor Yanukovych – a ventriloquist dummy of Vladimir Putin.

Repeating without changing a single comma the message dictated by Russian propaganda, left and right parroted the same thesis that Nuland came to Brazil to threaten President Jair Bolsonaro and interfere in the elections. The madness was even more robust with a Reuters article, which cites off-line sources who would have assured that last year, during his visit to Brazil, the director of the CIA, the US intelligence agency, would have sent a message so that Bolsonaro did not try to intervene in the elections.

The Brazilian government denies it. The American doesn’t talk about it. But the business took shape and is so weird that it seems to be part of the same process of erosion of the relationship of the Brazilian right with the West and that is pushing Brazil towards an axis formed by a heavy bar group.

Even the squirrels that prance around the White House gardens know that Biden doesn’t like Bolsonaro. The feeling is mutual. It is also not too much to think that Democrats have a preference for Lula, even though they know that he is not the best option for healthy relations between the two countries and the region.

But I think it’s worth an addendum. In several aspects in the United States, and especially in American foreign policy, it is not possible to say that there is “a Biden government”. The wheels are being turned by interest groups. And not necessarily in the same direction. What you see is a government of agendas. Whoever has power moves his pieces according to the interests of each of the administration’s corners. In the midst of the mess, there is no shortage of people to take advantage of it.

E thus, history is being rewritten.

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