When she meets with her German friends, it lowers the meantime, the main. “In certain circles, I’m ashamed of myself, when I say, I’m from Brazil,” says Bianca Donat Angelo. “I never used to talk like that.”

The Brazilian is editor-in-chief of “Tópicos”, the club magazine of the German-Brazilian society (DBG). Just like many other compatriots, the President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro brings you to despair.

“He destroyed our country, it is incredibly sad,” she says in an interview with Deutsche Welle. And she is sure: “This bad reputation of Brazil to get rid of so quickly, even if a new government comes.”

From the world Cup hosts for outsiders

The crash of Brazil runs breathtaking. Ten years ago, the country was on the verge of overtaking France as the fifth largest Economy in the world. In the meantime it slipped to twelfth place. The Per capita income in Brazil is currently a third below the of the Chinese.

“Has Brazil blown it?” (Brazil has messed it up?). Already in September 2013, addressed to the British “Economist” the crisis in the largest country in Latin America. The crash of the country was at this time in its true extent cannot be foreseen.

on The contrary, Brazil presented itself as host of the 2014 soccer world Cup and the 2016 Olympic games. And it was also increasingly self-aware.

Because the governments of presidents Fernando Henrique Cardoso (1995-2003), Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (2003-2011) and his successor Dilma Rousseff (2011-2016) had Brazil on the international Reputation gained.

“The green giant awakes”

The country took part in international UN missions in Haiti, Congo and the Golan heights. And it diplomatically spring was a leader in the group of emerging countries, the so-called BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

internationally, the most successful poverty-reduction was observed with different social programs, which helped some 30 million Brazilians to rise in the middle class. Brazil correspondent Alexander Busch, summed up the euphoric mood in the title of his 2009 book published: “economic power, Brazil. The green giant is awakening”.

Brazil’s dark side

in the Meantime, the euphoria is gone. “The positive Image is a way”, says Friedrich Prot von Hunter, President of the German-Brazilian society, was from 2004 to 2009, Ambassador to Brazil.

The Diplomat looks currently “no social progress, but rather an economic disaster”. His conclusion: “From a German point of view, a personality like Bolsonaro is not at all conceivable. I am also personally very difficult.”

For the Brazilian Bianca Donat Angelo is revealed under the government Bolsonaro, the dark side of their home. “In Brazil every day are murdered four women and discrimination against Black and Indigenous is deeply rooted in the society,” she explains. “However, these issues are suppressed.”

International Isolation

Bolsonaro is driving the international isolation of Brazil more. As his political model, US President Trump, he threatens to leave the Paris climate agreement from the world health organisation to withdraw, and to move the Brazilian Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.

“Bolsonaro seen in the Corona-crisis is more radical than Trump,” says the Brazil-expert Oliver Read, Professor of International relations at the University “Fundação getúlio Vargas” (FGV) in São Paulo. “The signing of the free trade abommens between the South-American market, Mercosur, and the EU is increasingly unlikely,” he tweeted recently.

Germany and Norway are also at a distance. They froze due to the dramatic increase in deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon in August 2019, the funds for forest protection temporarily. The German development Ministry (BMZ) is looking for new cooperation partners in the country and existing projects expire.

“it is Not the cold shoulder

” show The German industry in Brazil, Bolsonaro supported because of its liberal economic agenda, is now suffering under the loss of image of the country. “There is no question that Brazil and Latin America have become significantly less attractive,” said Philipp Schiemer, CEO of Mercedes-Benz do Brasil, in an Interview with the German business newspaper “Handelsblatt”.

Schiemer’t see everything negative: “The government has increased the flexibility of the labour laws, so that it is not yet come to mass redundancies, as in the United States,” he says. “And she quickly and efficiently organized financial relief for the poor.”

Even if the Brazilian Bianca Donat Angelo can be found at the government of Bolsonaro nothing Positive: it is convinced that it would be wrong to show right now Brazil the cold shoulder. “You can’t throw because of the crisis, just the whole history and culture of the country on the trash heap,” she says. “Bolsonaro is not Brazil.”

author: Astrid Prange De Oliveira

*The contribution of “Fremdschämen for Bolsonaro and Brazil,” published by Deutsche Welle. Contact with the executives here.

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