The CIA, Brazil and the new Cold War with China

CIA Director William J. Burns

By Nathalia Urban

The recent visit to Brazil by the director of CIA William J. Burns was focused on planning against the rise of the Latin American left and also served for the US government to strengthen an anti-China offensive with the Bolsonaro government.

The classified visit took place just days after former Brazilian president Luis Inácio “Lula” da Silva gave an interview to the Chinese newspaper Guancha in which he said that “Chinese ability bothers other developed countries, like the United States”.

The anti-China offensive aims to contain Beijing’s influence in the Southern Hemisphere, and is current US state policy. The biggest defenders of the limitation of Chinese technology in Brazil and minimisation of Huawei’s activities in the country can be found in the Institutional Security Office, headed by General Heleno, who met with Burns, and this matter was the reason for a Brazilian delegation’s trip to the United States in early June.

Underpinning perception that BRICS partner China’s rise is the greatest threat to the US, including to its national security, is the idea that there needs to be a more confrontational policy against China. This competition has several dimensions. One part goes through a kind of continuing economic war. It started with Trump and the tariff wars and this is intensifying in the political-diplomatic sphere under Biden, through the attempt to create a network of alliances around China to contain it and diplomatically isolate the country. And it has another dimension which involves using the issue of human rights to create problems for China in Xinjiang, and in Hong Kong.

On the other hand, Lula said: “If we need to cooperate with China, we must establish a strategic partnership with China, just as I did when I was president.If it is necessary to cooperate with Russia, we will cooperate with Russia”.

The former president also stated: “I have fond memories of the relationship we established with China.Although the country is Brazil’s biggest trading partner, in fact, our current government does not respect China and does not treat it as a partner, because the government only sees the United States and not China.”

The latest opinion poll shows Lula da Silva on course for a first-round victory at the 2022 presidential election, beating Jair Bolsonaro by 30% of valid votes. The polls also show Lula would win in every demographic.

In his daily broadcast to supporters, Bolsonaro commented on the IPEC institute poll that puts Lula on 49% of voting intentions compared to his 23%. Without presenting evidence, Bolsonaro insinuated that there is conspiracy for him to lose the election.

“There’s candidate out there is gathering party leaders and dividing his entire government. Then, the guys are already starting to work against the auditable vote. He only has fraud. He doesn’t walk on the street and I do”, he declared.

Bolsonaro insisted that “we want clean elections next year, because they took Lula out of jail, made him eligible, for him to be president through fraud. This will not happen!”

The above article was initially published here on Brasil Wire.