“Former, current and future commander of the Army: unbreakable bonds of respect, camaraderie and loyalty”, highlights the caption of the photograph.
The publication of the image is part of an effort by both the Armed Forces and the Planalto Palace to try to overcome the wear and tear created by President Jair Bolsonaro’s (non-party) decision to dismiss General Fernando Azevedo as commander of the Ministry of Defense.
The exchange, followed by the resignation of the commanders of the Armed Forces, generated apprehension in sectors of society about the possibility of the president politicizing the Army against the restriction measures enacted by state and municipal administrations in the coronavirus pandemic.
Initially, Bolsonaro’s intention was to put at the head of the Army a name that was in tune with his government and had a stance contrary to the restriction measures enacted by states and municipalities against the coronavirus. The abrupt changes, however, generated a negative reaction in the Armed Forces.
To avoid aggravating the crisis, Bolsonaro stepped back and, on Wednesday (31), the new Minister of Defense, Walter Braga Netto, used the criterion of seniority to select the new commanders of the Armed Forces.
In favor of restrictive measures, General Paulo Sérgio Nogueira de Oliveira was chosen to command the Army.
In an interview with Folha, Minister Marco Aurélio, dean of the STF (Supreme Federal Court), classified the change made by the president in Defense and the Armed Forces as “bad”, but he sees no risk to democracy. For the magistrate, substitutions create insecurity.
“The repercussions are bad because, especially considering the layperson, it generates insecurity, legal insecurity, and to live in society we need security,” he said.
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