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March 14, 2011


marcus vinicius

but obama....
we no speak americano !
pá pá pá pará papá pá pará...

Rio Gringa

Haha! There is supposed to be a musical performance of some kind before the speech, actually..

marcus vinicius

a ver pelo entusiasmo da propaganda do website http://www.obamabr.org/ acho que ele até volta pro rock in rio !
by the enthusiasm of the publicity website http://www.obamabr.org/ i gess he would come back for rock in rio !
and bring george clinton, bill clinton and some funky music for us !
yeaaaahhhhhh !


This was a very nice and informative post! Thanks for passing this information along! I just got back from Carnaval and was staying right by Cinelandia! I'll have to tell all my friends to attend the speech and let me know what it is like! Can people videotape there? I would assume so. It will probably be ALL over Globo as well. I'm not at all an Obama supporter, but even I have to say I find it extremely exciting that he is going for a visit!

I'd like to make a few points:

1.) If you stop to contemplate it, it truly is exciting and cool that a U.S. president is taking the time to go not only to Brazil and its capital but to also Rio de Janeiro specifically to give a speech/visit a favela. This is great news for Brazil and Rio lovers in the U.S. because it symbolizes a new era of U.S. - Brazil relations! Even if no drastic policy changes are made, again, the fact that he's going for a visit already says quite a bit in and of itself!

2.) I TOTALLY disagree with those Brazilians who say that Obama's visit is some sort of "affront" to Brazil. On the contrary, I think it is an acknowledgement of Brazil's rising power and importance on the world stage. I know we have economic interest in Brazil, but I don't think Obama is going to exploit, but rather to forge a mutually beneficial relationship. It certainly will be interesting to see what comes of this new relationship. I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH how much I hope that this visit lays the groundwork for something substantial and is not just a photo-op sort of visit.

3.) I really agree with what you said about Obama needing to be on point and not having any wiggle room. His every word will be dissected, twisted, and interpreted every which way so he needs to be extremely careful. This would happen with any foreign president planning a big visit to a country, but I suspect that because Obama is the president of the United States and because he is going to Brazil and giving a public, open-air speech in a sort of unprecedented way, that he will be under particular scrutiny.

Cinelandia will be a total zoo! Wow, I wonder how security and crowd control will work for that event. Will they clean up the plaza and clear out all the beggars? Will the metro be running? I would assume so, since people will want access to the event. Interesting!

The Gritty Poet

The "The oil is ours" march reminds me of a post published in one of my favorite blogs.


É realmente um lista que nunca estará completa.

James Miller

I definitely saw the anti-Americanism when I was in Brazil. It's funny how countries want to blame all their problems on America. In Vietnam some of them still want to say that they are poor because of the war. The war ended 35 years ago Here is a link to the Corruption Perception Index. Notice that the poor countries are at the bottom and the rich developed countries are at the top which means they are less corrupt.


Marcio Bernardo

Nice post, and it clear that Brazil has the most to gain with a stronger partnership with US.

But you and James Miller got me really curious about the anti-americanism you seen/perceived in Brazil...

Rachel, you wrote "There's a great deal of virulent anti-Americanism in Brazil"! well it could be that I lost something in translation but virulent anti-Americanism brings images of mobs burning American flags and people actively looking to harm Americans...

Did either of you experience such thing in Brazil? Were you afraid to tell your Nationality? James did you experience it during W. Bush years?

Both example you used Rachel are a bit flawed in my view, The Sarah Lacy thing was hardly because she was an American and more to do with her reaction and defacing our National flag (as you know were are very zealot of the Brazilian image), I believe a person of any nation would have received the same "treatment", defacing a national flag is a no-no in our culture (never saw any flags being defaced in Brazil, not even Argentinean flags during WC) and the "Movimento o Petroleo eh Nosso" is against Private exploration of Oil in Brazil, it does not single out US interest alone but any Private interest even Brazilian private capital so their protest is hardly anti-American.

That BBC survey of the popularity of countries (the one you mentioned on your post of March 08) has break down of the popularity of each individual country http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/bsp/hi/pdfs/05_03_11_bbcws_country_poll.pdf

Now, it is interesting to see that 64% of Brazilians view the US as having a positive influence in the world and 21% of Brazilians view the US as having a negative influence (of the Latin American countries view of US influence Brazil had the highest positive score and the lowest negative)... this is in contrast to the Brazilian views of France 48% view as positive and 23% as negative and UK 43% view as positive and 23% as negative...

SO Brazil does not seems to be particularly anti-American, that is not to say that there isn't anti-American feelings in Brazil as James said it is a convenient tool to shift blame for oneself failures and shortcomings but there is a historical component to it as-well, US gave backing/training a support for the Military Dictatorship in Brazil and Latin America and this period is generally regarded as our darkest period so we do have an issue with that you meddle in the history of our country! Regime Change isn't a very big deal for American foreign polity but it is a four letter word for us...

But having said that the anti-Americanism you encounter in Brazil is from a left wing person who will give you an earful for half an hour and them invite you over for dinner with his/her family!!! Anti-Americanism sentiments were re-kindle during W years and the Iraq war but I really think it's of a garden variety than anything that should make someone worried... Did any of you had a different experience?

Rio Gringa

@Marcio, You're right about some of the examples - I enjoy linking back to my own blog to be honest, but things are kind of messily organized so when I have something in mind to link back to I can't always find it and just go with the next best thing. I really need to reorganize...anyway.

Xenophobia and anti-Americanism doesn't just mean burning flags - to me, it can be as simple as talking trash. There are unfortunately plenty of Brazilians who hate the US and are open about it (while some, at the same time, happily consume our crappy movies and video games and whatnot). Like most things in Brazil, it's complicated. But just go on any Brazilian article about Obama's visit (especially Globo, Yahoo, etc), and you'll see exactly what I mean.

I also think that on some level, it's about resentment (part of which is fed by the dictatorship era abuses), but also that Brazil for a long time was "the country of the future" while the US became so powerful. Now that the playing field is evening out, so to speak, some of those that harbor that resentment seem to feel a kind of bitter smugness.

Watching what happens this weekend will be very interesting, and I think will bring a lot of this type of stuff to light.


Hey guys, they called off the public speech of the president, have you seen that?
It´s going to take place at "Teatro Municipal" instead.

marcus vinicius

showbama cavelled !
i think is much better this way !

marcus vinicius

showbama *canCelled rsssssssss

Marcio Bernardo

Thanks for your insights Rachel, I had a feeling that I didn't understand the meaning of "virulent anti-american", I though that you implied that Brazilians has a bellicose stance against americans

Yeah, I saw that pres. Obama cancelled the speech it's a shame in my opinion but the security situation would be a night mare, to many tall buildings surrounding Cinelandia... Obama administration is trying to mend bridges with Lat. Am. and the last think we need right now is for something to go terribly wrong in Brazil, If they cancelled due to security more power to them...

I know its a knee reaction of my part but why Brazil wants to be a permanent member of the security council if we aren't prepared, at least in the case of Libya, to make tough calls... as I said on my earlier post "regime change" is a four letter word in Brazil so why would we want to be part of a security council!!! (just because the movers and the shakers of the world are part of it??) are we going to send military force to actively participate in conflicts?! You really can't expect to be part of security council and just do peace keeping missions...


@Marcio Bernardo

Interesting link. It shows that Brazil and Chile are actually less anti-American than any Western European country. And we Latins still get stereotyped as suffering from an inferiority complex and blaming everything on the US. Just see the RioGringa's post.

There are more serious reasons for anti-Americanism existing in Brazil: reasons more serious than RioGringa and other self-centered Americans would like to admit. Just an example: the 64 coup partly engineered by US ambassador Lincoln Gordon with the blessing of president LBJ - an event RioGringa has never written about.

(I guess she'll censure my post, she tends to do that when someone disagrees with her.)

Marcus Vinicius

@Rafael, its very difficul the americans recognize their historical fails.
"quem bate esquece, quem apanha nunca esquece"

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