While Brazil marches toward becoming the world’s next Covid-19 epicenter, President Jair Bolsonaro’s attention is focused elsewhere. He is digging deeper into his trenches, trying to block a potential impeachment process or avoid becoming a lame-duck president with two and a half years left in his term. All the while, despite constant flip-flopping — such as bashing traditional political parties, then handing over jobs in his administration in exchange for their support — his core group of militants are ready to fight tooth-and-nail for Mr. Bolsonaro. Quite literally, as a matter of fact. One faction of Bolsonaro-supporting politicians and digital influencers have decided to galvanize their far-right followers, urging them “to Ukraine” Brazil.
“To Ukraine” (or ucranizar) Brazil, in this sense, is a reference to the Euromaidan protests in 2013. When then-President Viktor Yanukovych rejected a deal to integrate the country with the European Union, mass protests toppled the government and ran him out of the country. As demonstrations grew in size and violence, far-right activists created brutal “trash bucket challenges,” in which they filmed themselves throwing politicians into dumpsters. Anti-Semite and fascist ultranationalist movements emerged in Ukraine in the crisis’ aftermath.
That’s what a sizable group of Bolsonaro loyalists want for Brazil.