As Lula Takes the Helm, Where Will U.S.-Brazil Ties Go?
Lula’s return, after a tumultuous election and a shocking attack by extremists on Brazilian parliament and Supreme Court, nevertheless opens a pathway for a reorientation in Brasilia and deeper U.S.-Brazilian cooperation on a number of fronts. These include climate change, commitment to democracy, and regional stability. However, Lula’s previous stint as president also demonstrated that he attached great priority to the Global South. Brazil was a co-founder of the BRIC (later BRICS) grouping which included China, Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa and played a key role in advocating an alternative global order.
As Washington increasingly frames the Global South through a lens of “the rules-based order” and “strategic competition,” how could Brazil and the United States influence each other’s policy choices? How will Brazil keep an even keel between its approach toward the United States, China, Russia? How could Lula energize regional integration and stabilization projects, and what can be Washington’s contributions in these arenas?