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Brazil

On 7 September: “Take to the streets to defeat the coup”

Saturday 4 September 2021, by Esquerda Online

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Bolsonaro is threatening the Brazilian people. As hunger rises, inflation soars, unemployment reaches unprecedented heights and Covid continues to claim victims, Bolsonaro’s fanatical supporters are summoned to action on September 7, an initiative structured on a confrontation with the judiciary (STF-Supreme Electoral Tribunal and TSE-Higher Electoral Tribunal). With this, a very serious political-institutional crisis is looming in the country.

Weakened and increasingly rejected by the people, Bolsonaro is radicalizing in an attempt to survive. His method is that of fascism: mobilize the extremist base, use the intimidation of militias to impose terror. It is time to put an end to the coup threat. Let’s take to the streets on 7 September – in a peaceful and organized way – to show that the majority of the Brazilian people do not accept authoritarian threats and want to end this criminal government. We are the majority: Bolsonaro out!

Bolsonaro’s strategy

One of Bolsonaro’s main goals is to frighten the opposition with coup threats and actions. The intention is to ensure that the democratic majority submits to the fascist minority through blackmail and intimidation. Giving in to the coup, leaving him the protagonism of the street, is the worst mistake that the left and the defenders of democracy can make right now.

Bolsonaro knows that it is very likely that he will lose the 2022 elections. He is also aware that his next destination and that of his sons could be prison. Terrified, he is appealing to the last resource he has: the ability to mobilize his far-right base. And for this, he counts on the support of the army, the police and the business community.

Passively waiting for the elections at the end of next year, as if Bolsonaro were going to respect the democratic-electoral process, would represent a huge and unforgivable mistake. First of all, because it would be tantamount to underestimating the danger of fascism, which, although weakened, retains a considerable base of followers in the country and elements infiltrated in various institutions, including the army and the police.

Second, because it would create the possibility of a possible recovery in Bolsonaro’s popularity until the end of 2022. We must take advantage of the time of the greatest attrition of the government to defeat it now, if possible by overthrowing Bolsonaro even before the elections. Moreover, the fall of the militiaman would be likely to paralyze the neoliberal counter-reforms and privatizations underway in Congress that are sponsored by the government and the centre parties.

The left must go into battle

The measures taken by the STF against Bolsonaro’s criminal actions and coup attempts must be fully supported. No freedom for the enemies of freedom. It is necessary to demand from state institutions firm action against these threats and the deliberately anti-democratic actions of Bolsonaro and his allies, especially with regard to the organization of the fascist demonstrations of 7 September. Silence in the face of “golpismo” – by governors, deputies, senators, judges, political parties, prosecutors, army and police commanders, business people and so on – must be understood as complicity, open or veiled, with Bolsonaro’s criminal actions.

Against Bolsonarismo, the struggle in the streets is decisive. Our enemy has its main point of support in fascist direct action. It is fundamental to counter the mobilization of the extreme right with the strength of the popular masses in the streets. Therefore, leaving September 7 free for the fascist parade would be a grave mistake. “Golpismo” would be strengthened, gaining confidence and the power of intimidation.

The Fora Bolsonaro (“Bolsanaro out”) campaign has already built four major national demonstrations this year, bringing hundreds of thousands of people to the streets in demonstrations far larger than those of Bolsonarismo. It’s time to repeat “the injection”. With a firm and unitary appeal from the leaderships and organizations of the left, social movements and all democratic sectors eager to fight, it is likely that the Fora Bolsonaro mobilization will be bigger in the streets than the pro-coup initiatives. This would have enormous political value, as it would represent an effective and symbolic defeat of Bolsonaro.

In this sense, the position of Lula, who is leading the polls for the presidential election, is of great importance. While Bolsonaro openly calls for the “golpe” that threatens the country, will Lula continue to prepare his candidacy for the presidency through negotiations and election speeches? Is it not time for Lula to call on the people to take to the streets, in peaceful and organised demonstrations, to defend democracy and threatened social and labour rights? Lula has a considerable historical responsibility at this critical moment for Brazil.

From today until 7 September, the most important task is the construction of large popular mobilizations on the occasion of National Independence Day. In ensuring security and the organization of democratic demonstrations, courage and firmness are needed to defeat fascism. Let’s go to battle, because it is in struggle that we will win!

- Beat “Golpismo”, Bolsonaro out!
-  Food, jobs, vaccines and a basic income for the people!
-  Down with neoliberal counter-reforms and privatizations!
-  For a Left Front in the struggles and in the elections!
-  For a government of the hard-working and oppressed people, without an alliance with the right!

3 September 2021

Original publication Esquerda Online.

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