Brazil’s ‘January 8th Insurrection’?

Thousands of supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro stormed Brazilian government buildings on January 8. Brazil’s National Congress, presidential palace and supreme court were ransacked by protesters. The scenes of protesters swarming the Congress (including on top of) and riot police firing tear gas made Brasilia seem more like a war zone. Bolsonaro, who has since moved temporarily to Florida, condemned the protests.

Why were they protesting? Bolsonaro’s left-wing competitor, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, won Brazil’s election in October 2022. Da Silva, a former union leader who entered politics after prodding from late Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, was president from 2003 to 2010. During his presidency, Brazil moved closer to Russia and China. Da Silva was incarcerated in 2018 on corruption charges but was cleared and released the following year.

Voter fraud? Bolsonaro, a right-winger, never admitted defeat after his October loss. He has often claimed that Brazil’s electronic voting machines are prone to fraud and were used to steal the election. The official count of the October 30 election was 50.9 percent for da Silva and 49.1 percent for Bolsonaro. Boslonaro is currently under investigation for spreading “election misinformation.”

To learn more: Watch Trumpet executive editor Stephen Flurry’s Trumpet Daily program “Is Trump Now Responsible for the Unrest in Brazil?” also read “Why You Need to Watch the Brazilian Election.”