housekeeping turn

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By MANUEL DOMINGOS NETO*

The immediate future of the country passes through the togado and the fardado

I read in the newspaper Folha de S. Paul, in the June 19 edition, the well-informed reporter Igor Gielow announced that an alleged “military wing” was considering the formation of a “ministry of notables” to save the Bolsonaro government, which was severely threatened by the arrest of Fabrício Queiroz.

As far as I know, conversations in this direction have been developing since last week, when the Minister of Education's unsustainable situation became clear.

The appointment of “notables” to the government team would be an “inversion of tidying up” in the face of the President's unpopularity, the impacts of the pandemic, the deteriorating economy and the perceived loss of prestige of the Armed Forces.

Thus, in addition to the Chancellor, the Ministers of Education and Health would be replaced.

This desperate effort to save the government was bound to fail. The fall of Weintraub, in addition to not being enough to “pacify” the ministers of the Supreme Court, would not necessarily suspend the criminal destruction of the Brazilian education and research system. That of Pazuello, an active-duty general, could even signal the detachment of the uniform from the government, but it would not be enough to define a minimally responsible posture in the face of the pandemic. Ernesto Araújo's would not necessarily imply a responsible attitude in international relations.

“Inverted tidiness” is something that does not suit Bolsonaro, who has a desire to mess up, destroy and promote chaos. The nature of the President does not match stability.

Queiroz's arrest only reinvigorates the growing conviction of the need to remove Bolsonaro. Removing him through impeachment, however, would be doubtful. Such an expedient would depend on the centrão's votes, which usually drop the bone when they don't see possibilities for the next day.

The immediate future of the country involves the togado and the uniform. Both are sensitive to popular outcry that can quickly become deafening.

Judges and generals are talking. There is no possibility for the former to deliberate without guaranteeing that the instrument of force will comply with their deliberations. Thus, ultimately, the major decision is in the hands of the Army High Command.

Declamations multiply that the military should stay out of politics. Well, the military is immersed in politics up to the hair. Today, any manifestation of an officer in pajamas is followed with anguished apprehension. The effective return to the barracks can only occur with the commanders clearly signaling that they will let the judges deliberate and the politicians play their role.

The real “inverted housekeeping” necessarily involves the removal of the Bolsonaro-Mourão ticket and the call for new elections.

Popular sovereignty was degraded by lies disseminated over the internet, by military interference in the electoral process, by a coalition of the mainstream media against the left and by ostensible omission of the Judiciary.

The result didn't work out. It couldn't work. Bolsonaro was not made to solve problems, his specialty is destructive braggadocio.

Those who think it is foolish for the country to live an electoral dispute in the middle of the pandemic, it would be worth remembering: the permanence of this government only exacerbates this and other problems.

* Manuel Domingos Neto is a retired UFC professor. He was president of the Brazilian Defense Studies Association (ABED) and vice president of CNPq.

 

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