Bolsonaro Laments Brazil’s Descent Into Authoritarianism

Eduardo Bolsonaro, the son of Brazil’s former President Jair Bolsonaro, alongside more than a dozen Brazilian lawmakers, has voiced grave concerns over the decline of democracy in Brazil. This outcry comes in the wake of actions taken by the administration of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, which critics label as a crackdown on political opposition.

The group presented their complaints at a Tuesday Capitol Hill press conference led by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Chairman of the House Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations Subcommittee. They point to dire conditions in Brazil, a country once celebrated for its democratic integrity that is now veering dangerously toward authoritarianism.

According to Eduardo Bolsonaro, the attack on democracy is not just abstract but deeply personal. He claims his family, especially his father, the former president, is being persecuted without any statement of concern from the Biden administration. The silence from the U.S., a nation that prides itself as a beacon of democracy, is alarming. “Brazil, unfortunately, is not a democracy anymore,” Eduardo Bolsonaro said.

The Brazilian Supreme Federal Tribunal, particularly through Justice Alexandre de Moraes, has spearheaded campaigns leading to censorship, police raids, and substantial limitations on freedom of expression. For instance, renowned journalist Paulo Figueiredo recounted his harrowing experience of censorship and financial blockade, signifying an alarming crackdown on journalistic freedom and the suppression of dissent.

Furthermore, the crackdown extends beyond political figures to ordinary citizens, with thousands reportedly losing access to social media platforms and facing legal actions, ostensibly under the guise of combating misinformation. This broad and indiscriminate silencing of dissent is a hallmark of authoritarian regimes, not democracies.

Brazil’s judiciary, particularly under Justice de Moraes, is accused of leading this “institutional rupture,” creating a nuanced form of dictatorship that is more difficult for the international community to discern and condemn. Morases has become notorious for cloaking the erosion of democracy under the guise of illusory due process of law.

The international community, and in particular the Biden administration, has been sharply criticized for its indifferent attitude to Brazil’s loss of freedom. Eduardo Bolsonaro’s and others’ concerns are not isolated grievances but part of a broader pattern of political and judicial overreach under President Lula’s administration. Actions taken by Brazil’s federal police, including raids and investigations into the Bolsonaro family under allegations of misusing the nation’s intelligence services, further illustrate the politicization of law enforcement mechanisms.