A week after having returned to the presidency, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is not only trying to erase the most offending traces of the Bolsonaro past, but also to manage the challenges of a present marked by the inequality in the relationship of forces. The third term of the ex-unionist began in Brasilia under a radiant sun that allowed to better illuminate the power of the scattered symbols. Lula received the command attributes of a child, an indigenous person, a black person, a woman, a worker and a disabled person: part of the big losers during the ultra-right government. “A good emotion washes the soul. Even knowing that it may be ephemeralthat there is, behind it, a desire to believe in something that may not be true,” said Jorge Coli, a columnist for the newspaper Folha of Saint Paul, on the inaugural force that this image has irradiated.

    Optimism does not admit excesses, however. After the days of euphoria, analysts once again highlighted the paradoxical political balance that exists. Because although Lula heads the Executive of a federal nation with greater programmatic and sentimental inclinations towards leftfederal Brazil points to more winding paths: thirteen of its 27 states, among them the most prosperous and populous, Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Minas, are administered by the right. Some of his governors were, at least until January 1, supporters of Jair Bolsonaro. The conservative forces also have majorities in both chambers of Congress, which forces the Government to engage in constant and sugar-coated negotiations with the political center.

    first sparks

    To beat the former Army captain in the second round, Lula had the invaluable collaboration of Simone Tebet, from the moderate Brazilian Democratic Movement (MDB), who had been in first place in the first round. The support had its prize: the Ministry of Planning and Budget. Upon taking office, last Thursday, Tebet made public “some discrepancies” with the head of Economy, Fernando Haddad. For the moment it has been a cordial dissidence.

    It is estimated that 281,000 Brazilians live on the street, 38% more than when Bolsonaro became president. Between 2021 and 2022, the number of indebted Brazilians has increased by six million. Almost half of those under 14 years of age are poor, representing a total of 20.3 million people. The Government has forced Congress to open the faucet of public spending that allows it to face the most urgent consequences of the policies that have governed the last four years. Analysts believe that there are greater consensus among the members of a heterogeneous government to deal with these burdens. One of the most difficult tests that the president will have to go through is related to his commitments to radically reverse the extreme right’s environmental policies and promote the announced “zero deforestation.”

    The role of Marina Silva

    Marina Silva, a heroine of the environmental struggle, was Lula’s minister during his first governments. She broke with the leader of the Workers’ Party (PT) in 2008. The danger of Bolsonaro’s re-election brought them closer again. She took over the Environment and Climate Change portfolio last Wednesday. Brazil, she said, has to meet the Paris Agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 37% by 2025. The ultra-right not only encouraged the destruction of biomes. His anti-ecological boasting brought enormous international discredit to that country, which Silva intends to reverse as quickly as possible.

    The role of the ministry, he maintained, “is not to be an obstacle to the fair expectations of economic and social development of our population, but rather to be a facilitator to guide how these demands can be met without prejudice to the necessary protection of our resources. natural,” he said upon assuming. Marina knows that From discourse to practice, a river the size of the Amazon flows“said Cristina Amorim, a columnist for the magazine piaui. According to Míriam Leitão, from the Rio de Janeiro daily or globeSilva knows that “there will be a point that will bring tension” with other ministries, especially that of Agriculture, led by Carlos Favaro, a representative of the sector’s businessmen. Lula, it is estimated, will always have the last word.

    the military front

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    Bolsonaro had made the Armed Forces co-rulers. With his defeat, they had to return to the barracks. The return of the PT to the Government has caused an allergy in some of the former commanders. Admiral Almir Garnier Santos refrained from handing over command of the Navy to Admiral Marcos Sampaio Olsen who, to top it off, expressed his gratitude to Lula for his trust and promised loyalty to the new authorities.

    The military have a special zeal for these hours. Bolsonaro imposed a 100 year old secret to the actions carried out during his administration by the uniformed. Lula promised to lift that restriction, especially regarding the disastrous role he played General Eduardo Pazuello during the pandemic while he was in charge of the Ministry of Health. The government’s decision to review its management, said the analyst Malú Gaspar, causes concern in the military ranks. It is feared that knowing the truth not only has the potential to wear down the figure of the former president, who fled to the United States, amid demands that he answer to justice, but also the Armed Forces themselves.