Itamaraty under new management will not give out any wooden horses. With Chancellor Carlos Alberto França in place of Ernesto Araújo, the changes will be more in tone than in substance.
Folha spoke with diplomats close to the new chancellor. According to them, Brazil will not abandon Israel’s approach, the conservative position in multilateral forums, in opposition to abortion and identity policies, alignment with right-wing countries like Hungary and Poland , the bet on accession to the OECD and reforms to the World Trade Organization.
But the fight against “globalism” and “narcosocialism”, ghosts frequently invoked by Ernesto, will leave the scene and will not like multilateral institutions and public friction with China. There will be no more ideological explosions, belligerent tweets and childish fights.
France is, by nature, a conciliatory subject, a good place, according to diplomats close to him. It tends to tone down the aggressiveness of foreign policy on critical issues such as China, the United States and the environment. It remains to be seen what will be the degree of autonomy of the new minister in the conduct of Itamaraty.
It is known that the portfolio will continue to be led by a triumvirate. In the Ernesto administration, there was a shared command with Congressman Eduardo Bolsonaro (PSL-SP) and international adviser to the presidency, Filipe Martins. The three spoke frequently and coordinated their actions. Along with France, Eduardo and Martins, who supported the diplomat’s appointment, will continue to formulate policies.
The big question is: will France, which has no experience in formulating foreign policy, will simply follow the leadership of Eduardo e Martins or will it have some latitude in the conduct of the ministry? President Jair Bolsonaro chose the diplomat because his first option, the Brazilian ambassador to Paris, Luis Fernando Serra, would be spoiled by the leaders of Congress and because he has “a good chemistry” with the new chancellor, who worked at the presidential ceremony. France is also a practicing Catholic, which pleased Bolsonaro.
Traditionally, ceremonial diplomats approach the president. So it was with Paulo César de Oliveira Campos, the POC, who was chief of ceremonies for ex-president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva for six years, and with Frederico Araújo, who played the same role with Fernando Henrique Cardoso .
France has been in charge of the presidential ceremony since the end of the Temer government. He was involved in planning the inauguration of Bolsonaro and also in the president’s trips abroad.
Bolsonaro is socially insecure and suspicious. With daily contact, France, seen as a sympathetic and captivating type, falls in favor of the president. The fact that the diplomat is inexperienced in foreign policy making and has not led any overseas mission is seen as an advantage, not a problem. Neither Bolsonaro nor Eduardo want someone very independent.
One of the first missions of the new chancellor will be to show that with the departure of Ernesto, the public fights with China are a turning point. The minister’s interlocutors say that it is necessary to take action in this direction for the country. This does not mean turning a blind eye to the strategic threat posed by China or the human rights violations in the country, but rather having a pragmatic relationship.
Restoring relations with Joe Biden’s government in the United States will also be a priority. Ernesto had been criticized in nominal terms by Democratic Senator Bob Menendez, head of the US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, for calling the Capitol invaders “good citizens.”
An appeal to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, a US Congressional midfielder, and a minimally ambitious climate summit proposal Biden will hold on April 22 and 23 would be some of the most urgent measures. Itamaraty diplomats celebrate the exchange and hope that calm and normalcy will return to the ministry.
But the same conciliation which reassures diplomats can put France under the direct shock of the hard core Bolonarist, who preferred Serra or Nestor Forster, ambassador in Washington, for the post.
According to one of the members of the ideological wing, “this pacifying and discreet thing is exactly what the Bolonarist base does not want”. “We know he [França] he will carry out orders on a daily basis, but no one knows his positions on the UN, Mercosur, globalism, China and religion, themes that really interest the Bolonarist base.