After the elections held in October 2018, the major change for Brazil has come to existence in which the country’s democratic backsliding will intensely seem to increase. His populist discourses against his opponents and the minorities in the political atmosphere long before the election year have brought the important questions before the public. The tendency to take back the country to the same military mentality between 1964 and 1985 ignites the conflict amongst the society, especially for the opponents. As if these were not enough to be anxious about the future democracy of Brazil, his third son Eduardo Bolsonaro suggested that the 1968 decree should be brought today to combat the left movements before their radicalization occurs. The federal deputy of Brazil, Eduardo’s offer has strengthened the concerns of people that the debates all around the country have been taking place on the news for a long time.
The military’s presence after the election in 2018 has become more prominent with the suggestion of President’s son Eduardo Bolsonaro. It is important to note that the results of the election in which concluded as the victory of Jair Bolsonaro have not limited to the Presidency[i]. In recent history, it seemed that the times and threats of military takeover stayed in the past and seemed to be completed with the establishment of the National Truth Commission which has conducted an investigation on the irregularities and conflict between 1964 and 1985 when it was the time the four military Generals governed the country. The history of Brazil in the process of democratization since the beginning of the 1930s has not experienced this sort of brutality when repressive policies implemented. The National Truth Commission was established under the government of Dilma Rousseff and completed its broad investigations on the effects of the military coup by gathering testimonies from people tortured and the witnesses after the period of two years. The heads of the Commission published its final review which shows that under the military rule of 1964 and 1985 the torture centers, summary executions, and forced disappearances had taken place as a priority in the State’s policies.[ii] The identification of 377 people held responsible for such harassment and recommended that those who are still alive should be brought to the trial. However, while the process and the inclination of the investigation by a Commission showed the full civilian control in the political atmosphere, the changed situation in Brazilian politics proved that it is miscalculated.
Apart from that, the military mentality came back to govern without even a coup. It can be counted as disrespect to the democracy of Brazil because of its roots which consolidated in pain. On the other hand, as if these are not enough again, the running mate of Bolsonaro in the elections now he became the Vice President of Brazil, retired General Hamilton Mourao claimed that if the anarchy comes up when Bolsonaro won the election then the auto-coup becomes necessary to keep the order. Hamilton Mourao also suggested that a replacement should be done in place of the 1988 democratic Constitution.
The discourses of these military-minded people both Eduardo and Hamilton might seem to change the sunny days of democratic consolidation of Brazil to cloudy overcast days even though it is early to make such an assumption under the conditions of pandemic Covid-19. Yet, the resistance to such catastrophic attitudes and devastating thoughts must be maintained in every field not just in Brazil but in the whole world.
[i] Tom Gerald Daly Populism, Public Law, and Democratic Decay in Brazil: Understanding the Rise of Jair Bolsonaro
[ii] Relatório da Comissão Nacional da Verdade, 10 December 2014 www.cnv.gov.br