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The pro-Bolsonaro riot in Brazil was nothing like Jan.6 in the US, history professor says

"Current President Lula is firmly in power," Andre Pagliarini said.

Published: January 9, 2023 6:28pm

Updated: January 9, 2023 8:33pm

The riot that occurred in Brazil was nothing like Jan. 6 in the United States, according to Andre Pagliarini, assistant professor at Hampden-Sydney College and non-resident fellow at the Quincy Institute.

"The most important thing to remember is the government that the protesters were protesting against is already in power," Pagliarini said on Monday's edition of the "Just the News, No Noise" TV show. "They've been sworn in since January 1."

"There was this sort of a strange limbo moment in the United States during President Biden's certification where President Trump was still in power," he continued. "There was a strange kind of moment of legitimacy of who could speak to what was happening. In Brazil, there's no such confusion. Current President Lula is firmly in power."

Over the weekend, supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro broke into buildings during a riot, including Brazil's National Congress, Supreme Federal Court, the Planalto Palace and the presidential workplace. It was compared to Jan. 6 by some American politicians.

Pagliarini explained that there was also a historical difference for Brazil's riot. 

"Brazil was governed by a military dictatorship for 21 years," he explained. "It's a country that historically is accustomed to interventions like military dictatorship. It's a much younger democracy than the United States. The images we saw yesterday really raise a kind of specter of a disruption of the democratic order that raises some dark memories."

Pagliarini also dove into Brazil's relationship with China and how impactful it is. 

"China is Brazil's largest trading partner," he stated. "Resilient foreign policy has long prided itself on a policy of independence on the world stage of not necessarily aligning itself with the United States or with the Soviet Union during the Cold War or with China now but really striking out a foreign policy based on Brazilian interests."

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