Brazil: Labor Union Sues Bolsonaro for Crimes Against Humanity

Source:  TeleSut

July 27 2000

Jair Bolsonaro aug 2000Jair Bolsonaro takes off his mask in a motorcycle shop,
Brasilia, Brazil, July 25, 2020. | Photo: EFE

In Brazil, 195,516 out of 2,419,091 COVID-19 cases belong to infected health workers.

Brazil’s Trade Union Network UniSaude filed a complaint in the International Criminal Court (ICC) against President Jair Bolsonaro for crimes against humanity and genocide during the COVID-19 crisis.

RELATED: Brazil: Health Workers Protest Against Bolsonaro

“Bolsonaro’s management of the pandemic has been criminal and negligent. He has risked the lives of health professionals and the people,” UniSaude denounced.

Despite testing COVID-19 positive, the far-right politician refuses to take preventive measures to protect citizens. He has also been seen greeting his supporters without wearing a mask, promoting meetings, and minimizing the pandemic’s impact in the country.

On Saturday, after learning that he had already overcome the disease, Bolsonaro drove his motorcycle without a mask around the Alvorada Palace.

UniSaude has also condemned the fact that Brazil has been without a health minister for over two months. Since the last health minister resigned from office in May, the inexperienced General Eduardo Pazuello has temporarily occupied this position.

“Brazil’s situation is extremely serious, and this has happened because of Bolsonaro’s unreliable decisions,” UniSaude said.

“Our accusation shows the people’s pain and concern about the health crisis,” nurse Jhuliana Rodrigues assured.

As of Monday, Brazil recorded 2,419,091 COVID-19 infections and 87,004 deaths. Among the infected people, 195,516 are health workers.

Related: Brazil’s favela slums left to fight the coronavirus alone as Covid-19 spread continues in country

The Latin American and Caribbean Left in 2019

Source:  Popular Resistance

December 28 2019

By Angel Guerra Cabrera, La Jornada, translation Resumen Latinoamericano, North America bureau

Image result for bolsonaro and macri

Macri and Bolsonaro

A gang of bandits arrived in Brazil’s Government thanks to that coup. The same as the Macri Administration in Argentina, they immediately started to govern for the one percent and the defense of the national sovereignty and social welfare set up by the Workers’ Party was taken to pieces.  Uncontrolled financial speculation was unleashed, as well as selling natural resources and public goods to transnational companies. Though these were the most devastating defeats for the left in this analyzed period, they were not the only ones. In 2009, the Manuel Zelaya Administration was ousted by a military coup openly orchestrated by the United States, for having joined the Petrocaribe oil alliance, the ALBA treaty, and fostering a decent and sovereign foreign policy for Honduras. Four years later, Paraguay’s Fernando Lugo was overthrown by a parliamentary-media coup. He was a prominent progressive supporter.It was confirmed in 2019 that the end of the progressive cycle in Latin America and the Caribbean was nothing but a fallacy. The overwhelming victories of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in Mexico and Alberto Fernandez in Argentina would be enough to refute it. Nevertheless, the alleged end of this cycle was based on real and very sad but at the same time exemplary facts for popular, progressive, and revolutionary forces. After all, popular governments in this region following Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez in 1999 seemed to be not only moving backward but at a standstill as two very serious defeats were suffered by Our America’s popular movement by 2016: The victory of a neoliberal and pro-imperialist coalition headed by Mauricio Macri in Argentina; and a media-judicial-parliamentary coup d’état staged against Dilma Rousseff in Brazil on August 2016.

Moreover, Lenin Moreno’s treason to his comrades of the Citizen Revolution, the Ecuadorian people, and to his own rhetoric since he joined Rafael Correa’s first term in office until he was elected President himself, moving his country back to neoliberalism and unprecedentedly surrendering to Washington. Similarly, Brazilian ex-president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was unfairly and evilly sentenced to prison on April 2019, an evident maneuver of the U.S. Empire and local oligarchies to prevent his certain victory on the October presidential elections taking place that same year. As a result of it, Jair Bolsonaro came to be a reinforcement of extreme right-wing positions not only in the region but around the world; as well as to the deepening of neoliberal policies and even more servile behavior towards imperialism, brought to their own countries by Chile’s Sebastian Piñera and Colombia’s Ivan Duque.

Regional organizations such as the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR)—today dissolved—and the intergovernmental mechanism for dialogue and political agreement CELAC—at a standstill—also suffered hard blows as a consequence of these events. Coming to existence after 2004, they had been able to help make important steps towards unity, integration, and achieving of sovereign policies in Latin America and the Caribbean. Meanwhile, Petrocaribe and ALBA were impacted by the decline in oil prices and, above all, by the increasing economic war staged by the United States against Venezuela and Cuba.

But three highly significant events can be described as the most outstanding issues during this year and they represent undeniable victories for the revolutionary and progressive forces, besides the two mentioned above victories in Mexico and Argentina. First, large people’s protests across the continent since the first quarter of the year, cornering governments in several countries of the region, particularly Chile’s Piñera and Colombia’s Alvaro Uribe-Ivan Duque. The stability and public order existing in Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Mexico are opposite to the lack of unpopular right-wing governments, all of them hanging by a thread and basically sustained with the United States’ support. The fact is that neoliberalism cannot govern south of the Rio Grande without brutally violating the rules of liberal democracy. A second issue is Cuba’s and Venezuela’s brave resistance and struggle for their own development, each of them with their own set of circumstances against Washington’s relentless and increasing economic war, marked in Venezuelan by an ongoing coup and serious violent counter-revolutionary events. Third, the relevant role played by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) defending the principles of the rule of law, evidenced on December 19 when the United States and Luis Almagro were defeated in the Organization of American States (OAS), as well as other events along this year. Bolivia’s coup d’état, the defeat of Uruguay’s Broad Front, and some other issues are pending for our next article.

Brazil Poll Shows Growing Rejection of Bolsonaro

Source:  TeleSUR

December 20 2019

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro looks on as he leaves the Alvorada Palace in Brasilia, Brazil December 12, 2019.Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro looks on as he leaves the
Alvorada Palace in Brasilia, Brazil December 12, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

The far-right government’s positive rating had already declined in Ibope’s four previous polls this year, falling from 35 percent in April. Its negative rating has risen from 27 percent in April.

The approval rating of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s government is dropping steadily and its negative rating is climbing, a CNI/Ibope poll showed on Friday, as his combative political style and a weak recovery weigh on his popularity.

RELATED: Brazil: The Bolsonaro Clan Is Investigated for Money Laundering

The number of Brazilians that rate his government as great or good has slipped to 29 percent from 31 percent in September, while those that view it as bad or terrible have increased to 38 percent from 34 percent in the previous poll, the new survey said.

Public confidence in Bolsonaro’s governing style has dropped since he took office in January, the poll said. A majority of those polled, or 53 percent, do not approve of the way he is governing Brazil, up from 40 percent in April and 50 percent in September. Those who approve of his governing style has fallen to 40 percent from 51 percent in April and 44 percent in September.

The number of Brazilians who said they trusted Bolsonaro has also dropped off, within the margin of error, to 41 percent from 51 percent in April and 42 percent in September. Those who have no trust in him rose to 56 percent from 45 percent in April and 55 percent in September.

The survey polled 2,000 people and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1 percentage point. The poll commissioned by industry lobby CNI was carried out Dec. 5-8.

‘Brazil Needs More Education, Not More Guns’, Lula Warns

Source:  TeleSUR
May 11 2019

Lula da Silva 5.jpgFormer President Lula da Silva at the National Coordination of Education
Workers Congress in Brasilia, Brazil, Jan. 12, 2019. | Photo: EFE

In an interview aired Friday by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva warned that his country’s problems will not be solved by governmental decisions that facilitate the use of weapons instead of promoting education.

RELATED:  BBC to Broadcast Lula’s Interview Banned by Local Brazilian TV

The Workers’ Party leader said Bolsonaro, “barbarously defends an armed, police state. He only makes that firing gesture. In his head, a weapon solves everyone’s problem. He has just authorized farmers can use guns and shoot anyone they want.” Lula added the current head of state “is sick and believes that Brazil’s problems will be solved with weapons. Brazil’s problems will be solved with books, with schools,” stressed the left-leaning politician.

The criticism came just days after former captain Bolsonaro signed a decree authorizing truck drivers, legislators, journalists, private security agents, lawyers and others to carry weapons in public places. This executive order will allow some 19.1 million citizens to request firearm licenses, according to Souda Paz Institute, an NGO dedicated to promoting a peace culture in Brazil.

Nationwide strike

On Wednesday, the current far-right administration also announced it would “block” 30 percent of the national budget already allocated to universities and research institutes from receiving their funs. This budget cut immediately moved thousands of Brazilian professors, students and scientists to protest and plan for a ationwide strike against social security reforms set for May 15.

“For Lula, education was an investment and not an expense. In 2010, upon leaving the Presidency, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva inaugurated the Teofilo Otoni campus in Minas Gerais. In his speech, he recalled his government’s maxim about education.”

Regarding the repression of young people and students, Lula pointed out in the exclusive interview that “for the wellbeing of Brazil, I hope [Bolsonaro] learns. … Instead of talking nonsense, Bolsonaro should say the following: ‘I will finish my term being better than Lula, I will create more universities, I will invest more in science and technology, I will enroll more children in school’.”

Imprisoned without evidence

During the interview, the 73-year-old politician and political prisoner answered several questions about the corruption allegations used to send him to jail for eight years, down from his original 12-year sentenced ruled on in 2018.

“The only thing that interests me is to prove my innocence and I will fight for it until my life’s last days,” Lula said and commented that, besides being politically motivated, his trial was wrought with legal irregularities. No actual evidence against the ex-president was ever presented in court, just testimonies against him.

“[The Human Rights, Family and Women Minister] Damares echoes Bolsonaro: minors are learning to use weapons without judicial authorization. The families demand it. Which families, minister? Those from the hills and slums? Now the motto is ‘arm one another’?”

Since April 7, 2018, Lula has been imprisoned at a Curitiba’s federal prison convicted of allegedly receiving a luxurious beach apartment from Odebrecht, a Brazilian construction company in exchange for contracts with Petrobras, a state-owned oil company.

Lula recalled that many opposition politicians wrongly thought he was going to leave Brazil before being arrested.

“I decided to stay in my country. If they want me in Curitiba, I will be there,” he said and thanked “those wonderful people who are out there,” referring to the thousands of Brazilians supporters who have been in permanent mobilization and solidarity since his imprisonment in April 2018.

Brazil’s Federal Supreme Court recently ruled to allow Lula to be interviewed. This was his first broadcast interview originally set to be aired on RedeTV, but the Brazilian media outlet changed course last week, allegedly pressured by the Bolsonaro administration.

Lula, the most important political prisoner in the world, says Chomsky

Source:  chamosaurio
April 15 2019

Former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, imprisoned for more than a year for alleged acts of corruption, is today the most important political prisoner in the world. 

This was stated by the prominent intellectual and political activist Noam Chomsky, during an interview with the channel Democracy Now, amplified by the portal Rede Brasil Atual. 

According to the professor of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the political prison seeks to silence Lula who, when he presided over Brazil, was the voice of the ‘global South’. 

Chomsky placed the prison of the former Brazilian ruler in a universal context and compared his situation with that of Australian journalist Julian Assange, creator of WikiLeaks, arrested on Thursday.

The renowned American linguist, of 90 years, perceives, from the historical perspective, the imprisonment of both as similar to that of the founder and general secretary of the Italian Communist Party, Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937). 

‘Some may remember when the (fascist) government of (Benito) Mussolini placed Antonio Gramsci in jail. The prosecutor said: We have to silence that voice for 20 years. We can not let him talk. That’s Assange. That is Lula. That is a scandal, “said Chomsky. 

He asked himself: ‘Do you hear something in the press about that? And he replied: ‘Well, Assange is a similar case: We have to silence that voice’.

According to the renowned intellectual, under the Lula government, at the beginning of this millennium, Brazil was one of the most, perhaps the most respected country in the world. “He was the voice of the global South under the leadership of Lula da Silva,” he stressed. 

In September, the North American thinker visited the exmandatario in the seat of the Superintendence of the Federal Police of Curitiba, capital of the southern state of Paraná, and when leaving he thought that by right Lula should be next president of Brazil and that meeting him again was ‘a wonderful experience’. 

“It is not possible to meet an extraordinary figure of the 21st century every day,” he said on the occasion.

Since April 7, 2018 Lula remains in prison in Curitiba after receiving a penalty of 12 years and one month imposed by the Federal Regional Court of the fourth region (TRF-4) for alleged acts of corruption. 

The former president was subjected in February to a second conviction in the anti-corruption operation Lava Jato, this time to 12 years and 11 months. 

I do not want to “think badly”

Source:  Guajirita Soy
April 15 2019

By: Ana Hernández Hernández

from guajirita 1.png

During the last few months, some unprecedented events in the medical collaboration that Cuba has given, have happened one after another, which without the slightest interest in “thinking badly”, I do interpret that behind them can go the hairy hand of those who have always tried to discredit the human task, to bring life, hope and light, where others are present with missiles, bombs and military forces in the name of vaunted “Humanitarian Aid”.

First, once he assumed power in Brazil the  neofascist Jair Bolsonaro, discontinues the More Doctors Humanitarian Program, thus putting the Cuban doctors out of the South American giant, but not before proffering as many slanders and lies as possible  against the true professionalism of our doctors, while, at the same time, encouraging them to defect and assuring them employment.

Jair Bolsonaro, who stated,  among the many falsehoods, that the doctors were slaves of the Cuban government, assured employment to those who were willing to leave the mission and not return to Cuba.  Those who decided to opt for his call and his promises, today are the same ones who the passing of the months have found them unemployed and drifting away from what they can find to pay for their livelihood.

Second , just a few days ago, as a result of irregularities in the payment, by their country, to the Congolese scholars who are studying at the Latin American School of Medicine, ELAM, these students created a climate of violence and instability in the center. It transcended borders, where the intervention of  public order personnel was necessary  in order to control indiscipline.

A few hours after the events,   the future health professionals apologized to Cuba, for such a situation …, but notwithstanding that it is a problem that concerns the Congolese authorities and not the Cuban ones, an unusual event occurred and before the eyes of the malicious, manipulators of information, criticism appeared blaming the largest of the Antilles and its study programs that train medical and paramedical personnel.

Third , and only a few hours ago, they kidnapped in Kenya two Cuban collaborators that make up the Medical Brigade, which since last year has been serving in that African land, an unprecedented fact throughout the long history of Cuba, in more than 160 countries of the world, where they have arrived with their message of health, life and hope for the needy.

There are undoubtedly three significant facts, in different latitudes, but they could very well be marked by a single interest, although apparently they could not have contact points … and I do not want to “think badly”, but that interest and points of contact I see through the magnifying glass that guides my steps and my eyes towards those who, once and a thousand times, have tried to tarnish the human work carried out by the Cuban medicine world, and of course! They are the same people who, without scruples,  have given themselves to the task of  calling Cuban collaborators, like military men who arrive to indoctrinate the peoples.

I do not want to “think badly”, but behind this may be the hairy hand of those who do not like us … I just conclude thinking: That on earth there are more flowers than snakes …, not to “Think Bad”

Bolsonaro closes More Doctors; Cuban professionals who stayed in Brazil face broken promises

Source:  La Santa Mambisa
February 7 2019

By Sergio Alejandro Gómez

Mayra Pinheiro’s promises to Cuban doctors in Brazil

The government of Jair Bolsonaro is preparing to permanently close More Doctors, a project designed by the Workers Party in 2013 to bring health care to the most remote areas of Brazil, and in which thousands of Cuban doctors participated.

The federal government decided to close the program and replace it with a new one , which is still being planned and will be presented “soon,  Mayra Pinheiro, secretary of Labor and Education at the Brazilian Ministry of Health , told the press on Wednesday. More Doctors.

The announcement leaves without job opportunities the professionals of the largest of the Antilles who decided to stay in Brazil after the Cuban Ministry of Public Health ended its participation in the program last November , due to the aggression and threats of Bolsonaro against Havana.

“People are like going crazy. There are those who no longer have money or work , “a doctor from Pinar del Rio, who is in Brazil, told Cubadebate, but she preferred not to give her name.

Of the eight thousand 471 employees who were working in that country when on November 14 the decision was made not to continue participating in More Doctors, 7 thousand 635 completed the mission, more than 90 percent , said the Cuban president, Miguel Díaz-Canel, in an act of homage to the doctors.

A group of doctors was married and with families incorporated in Brazil, so they decided to stay there legally, while others returned to Cuba in December and then traveled independently to Brazil to try to specify a job offer.

“There is always someone who stayed even to sell coconuts on a beach, but most people are disappointed because they had the idea that they were going to stay to work as doctors, ” said the doctor from Pinar del Río. “The reality is that they made promises and now they cleaned their hands like Pontius Pilate.”

In a recording that Cubadebate had access to, Mayra Pinheiro assures Cubans that they will have preferential treatment . The Brazilian official organized groups in the social network WhatsApp to “keep informed” those who decided to stay.

“The meeting was very productive with the Ministry of Justice, which ruled on the legality of Cuban doctors, who would be treated with a special category that would allow them to work and stay in the More Doctors registry, granting them the possibility to participate in the program in the coming months, “says Pinheiro in the audio shared between hundreds of doctors and in which he asks that they not disclose it.

The hope of those who wanted to opt for their re-entry to Más Médicos was set on February 18th. That day, the call for Brazilian professionals to fill vacancies in the most intricate areas of the country was over.

The Cubans were going to bid for one of the nearly 800 positions available and that no Brazilian doctor accepted , but the decision of the Ministry of Health closed the doors.

According to Pinheiro’s statements to the press, the idea is that the last cycle of open vacancies will be closed this week.  The doctors who are currently in the program (not the Cubans) may continue for the term of their contract, which is three years.

The official called for foreigners not to attend these calls, because they will not be accepted. And that is precisely the situation of the Cubans.

The only possibility of being able to exercise their profession is in the revalidation of the title , a cumbersome and delayed process that is controlled by the Medical College of the country.

The test, managed by the National Institute of Studies and Educational Research, is carried out in two phases and does not have a fixed date for the call. The 2017 edition should offer the results this month, almost two years later.

In addition, according to the laws in force, only Cuban doctors who have received permanent residency can take the exam .

Promises from the United States

The group of professionals in Brazil has also been contacted by institutions from third countries with promises to legalize their status in the United States .

This call of the Solidarity Without Borders (SSF) group, based in Hialeah, promotes the migration of professionals to the United States and says that the group is making efforts to reactivate the controversial Parole program for Cuban Medical Professionals.

Senators of Cuban origin and opponents of any rapprochement with Havana, Marco Rubio and Bob Menendez, recently introduced a resource in the US Congress that seeks to reestablish a program of brain drain aimed at Cuban doctors who fulfill their mission abroad.

This measure was established by the government of George W. Bush and repealed at the end of the mandate of Barack Obama. During the years that remained in force (2006-2017), this policy constituted an illegal incentive for Cuban health personnel who collaborated in third countries to abandon their missions and emigrate to the United States.

The program caused damages to the international medical cooperation of Cuba and especially to the poor nations of the third world that benefit from the contribution of the professionals of the Island.

According to the Minister of Public Health, José Angel Portal, more than 600 thousand Cubans have rendered medical services in more than 160 countries during the last 55 years. In Cuba, 35 thousand 613 health professionals from 138 countries have been trained for free.

Although the Minsap has not specifically stated its position with the Cubans who failed to fulfill their obligations and decided to remain in Brazil, the policy applied so far allows the reincorporation of the doctors to their previous jobs.

The ministry ratified it in 2017 , after the announcement of the end of the Parole program for Cuban Medical Professionals by the United States.

“In this new scenario, the Ministry of Public Health reiterates its willingness to allow sector professionals who abandon their collaborative missions to return to Cuba and rejoin the National Health System, as they have been doing since 2014, of in accordance with current immigration regulations. “

Brazil’s New Foreign Minister: Climate Change is Marxist Ploy

Source: TeleSUR
November 15 2018

ernesto araujo brazil foreign minister.jpgErnesto Araujo (r), Brazil’s new foreign minister does not believe in
climate change. | Photo: Reuters

Brazil’s new Foreign Minister Ernesto Araujo believes that climate change is a ploy by “cultural Marxists” to asphyxiate Western economies and protome China’s growth. He also characterized climates science as “dogma”. His appointment was confirmed by Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro Wednesday.

RELATED:  Brazil: ‘Doctors For the People’ Regrets Cuban Colleagues Exit

“This dogma has been used to justify increasing the regulatory power of states over the economy and the power of international institutions on the nation states and their populations, as well as to stifle economic growth in democratic Capitalist countries and to promote the growth of China,” he wrote in his blog post in October.

While attacking the Workers’ Party (PT), Araujo wrote in another post, “criminalizing everything that is good, spontaneous, natural and pure. Criminalizing the family on charges of patriarchal violence. Criminalizing private property. Criminalizing sex and reproduction, saying that any heterosexual act is rape and every baby is a risk to the planet because it will increase carbon emissions.”

Climate experts had expressed their disappointment over Bolsonaro’s choice, hoping for a more pragmatic pick.

“Brazil has played a very significant role in the Paris agreement. It would be really bad for the country’s image if he brings with him his ideology,” said Carlos Rittl, the executive secretary of the Brazilian Climate Observatory.

Bolsonaro is intent on opening up the Amazon to corporations which can wreak havoc for the environment and Indigenous people who reside there.

For Rittl, Brazil is not the United States and if the country “becomes a pariah on the global climate agenda, it would be extremely bad for our business, especially agribusiness. When they go to Europe to negotiate a deal, climate safeguards will be on the table.”