Glauber Braga, a left-wing member of the Brazilian parliament for the Party of Socialism and Liberty (PSOL), is currently being threatened and victimised for boldly standing up against provocations from the far-right Free Brazil Movement (MBL). Communists of the International Marxist Tendency give their full solidarity to comrade Glauber Braga, who was absolutely correct to oppose the harassment and bullying of these far-right thugs. 

On 4-5 November, the national congress of the Brazilian section of the IMT took place. The congress was tasked with evaluating the development of the organisation, the developing political situation, and the success of the “are you a communist?” campaign. In light of this, the organisation decided to change its name. Previously Esquerda Marxista (Marxist Left), the Brazilian section of the IMT is now called the Internationalist Communist Organisation!

Members of Marxist Left (the Brazilian section of the IMT) and the Brazilian Communist Party – Revolutionary Reconstruction met on the afternoon of Thursday 2 November 2 at the “Rally against imperialist wars – Ukraine and Palestine”, hosted jointly by both organisations. 200 people attended, including members and guests, with political reports delivered by Jorge Martín, representing the International Marxist Tendency (IMT), Gabriel Lazzari, representing the PCB-RR, and Serge Goulart, representing the Marxist Left.

10 April marked the 100th day of the new Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (Lula) government in Brazil. Lula's victory at the ballot box in 2022 was a victory of the struggle of young people and workers, who mobilised to defeat the hated Bolsonaro government and its reactionary policies. But, as we explained during the campaign, this was not the end of the struggle. Bolsonaro and his supporters have gone nowhere – even if they have been weakened – and the government of Lula and Vice President Geraldo Alckmin is pursuing a policy of unity with the bourgeoisie, submitting itself to the fundamental interests of the ruling class and imperialism.

At a meeting of the National Board of PSOL (‘Party of Socialism and Liberty’), on Saturday 17 December, resolutions were discussed and passed drawing a balance sheet of the party’s 2022 election campaign, and on the relationship between the party and its parliamentary faction with the new Lula government.

A debate has opened up within the Socialism and Liberty Party (PSOL) about the question of whether it should enter the Lula-Alckmin government. The following open letter was drafted by our Brazilian comrades of Esquerda Marxista (Marxist Left), calling on the National Leadership of the PSOL to reject the decision of its National Executive to enter the Lula-Alckmin transition team, a first step towards entering a government that has committed to carrying out attacks on the working class in the name of ‘fiscal responsibility’.

Image: Esquerda Marxista

Bolsonaro’s defeat is a victory for the working class and the youth that opens up a new political situation in the country. Popular hatred for the reactionary government overcame the widespread and brazen use of the state machine in the electoral contest; the fake news; and the policy of class conciliation on the part of Lula and the PT.

On Sunday, Lula of the Workers’ Party (PT) narrowly defeated the far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro (50.9 percent to 49.10 percent) in the second round of the presidential elections. While workers and youth are rightly celebrating this result, we should also note that Bolsonaro exceeded expectations, and managed to increase his vote by over 6 million between the two rounds, compared to an increase of 2.6 million for Lula.

The following is a statement by our Brazilian section, Esquerda Marxista (Marxist Left) offering solidarity with worker, youth and neighbourhood activists who have resolved to break up road blockades by hardline Bolsonaro supporters, refusing to accept the result of Sunday’s elections. Our comrades will participate in these efforts, and call for the main left and trade union organisations to back them.

The first round of the Brazilian elections are over. Our priority and central struggle now is to help the working class defeat Bolsonaro at the polls on 30 October. For this, first of all, it is necessary to understand the real proportion of votes in the first round. The 57.2 million votes for Lula and the 51 million votes for Bolsonaro correspond to 48.4 percent and 43.2 percent of the so-called “valid votes”. However, when we consider the total of 156.4 million voters eligible to vote in Brazil, it is clear that Lula received a vote of 36.6 percent of them and Bolsonaro only 32.6 percent, that is, less than a third.

Since being freed from prison, ex-president of Brazil Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (known commonly as Lula), has had his conviction nullified, been found innocent, and had his political rights restored. Now he is in first place in the opinion polls for the upcoming presidential elections in October, on 46% as against 29% for the current president, Jair Bolsonaro.

The Bolsonaro regime’s handling of the pandemic in Brazil has been catastrophic. 400,000 people have died (officially), the healthcare system is collapsing and now hunger is rampant. The wretched capitalist system in Brazil has created a humanitarian nightmare and an ideal breeding ground for new, more dangerous variants. Even the ruling class is beginning to distance themselves from Bolsonaro as the mood in society turns to bitter anger against the regime.

The pandemic is out of control in Brazil. According to official data, at the time of writing (21 March) there have already been more than 294,000 people killed by COVID-19. Approximately 2,000 new deaths are registered on average every day. When underreporting is taken into account, these figures are likely to be significantly higher.

Brazil is beating records for the number of daily deaths due to COVID-19, and at the time of writing, the country has exceeded 260,000 casualties. Added to this is the collapse of the country’s health system, with the occupation of beds exceeding 80 percent of capacity in 16 states and the Federal District, with nine states exceeding 90 percent capacity. Read the original in Portuguese, originally published 4 March.

A strike by refuse workers in Brazil against job losses and state repression has ended after 15 days with an important, partial victory. We publish below a report by our Brazilian comrades of Esquerda Marxista from yesterday (available here in Portuguese), giving a balance sheet of the strike. Additionally, we publish an earlier report (Portuguese here) giving some further background on these events.

Ford announced last Monday the end of production of vehicles in Brazil. The decision led to immediate cessation of activities at the Camaçari (Bahia) and Taubaté (São Paulo) facilities, maintaining only the production of parts for stock, while the production of Troller jeeps will be maintained only until the last quarter of 2021 in Horizonte (Ceará). There are thousands of workers who will be newly unemployed in Brazil and Argentina, in addition to the thousands indirectly affected by the layoffs.

The upcoming municipal elections in Brazil are being seen as a litmus test of Bolsonaro's electoral support following two years of chaos, demagogy, attacks on the working class, and now the disaster of the COVID-19 pandemic. There is clearly a desire for radical change in Brazil, despite the shameful policies of class collaboration by leaders of the left.