Bernard-Henri Lévy to visit Brazil in one of his moments more turbulent, almost like in the times in which this philosopher formed in equal parts between the maoists and foci of scenarios was still forming his reputation as a thinker of action and is planted in Iran in the seventies or in Bosnia in the nineties. Dressed in her eternal uniform —dark suit, white shirt partially unbuttoned—, with which it has become one of the thinkers in the media and recognizable in France and much of Europe, Lévy (Algeria, 1948) goes directly to the problem between sips of tea at a hotel in São Paulo: “the Whole world is looking at Brazil. What you do today, your president-elect [Jair] Bolsonaro is discussed in all parties and what we are seeing is a president without a program, reminiscent of one of the darkest moments of the history of the country and without genuine love for his homeland. The world is amazed by the incredible vulgarity of some of his comments. It's porn policy. How he speaks of minorities, of women. The world is stunned,” he repeats with a fine indignation in paris. And summarizes the question that most shocks to the political scientists of the whole world: “And he has not won by giving a coup but through the ballot box”.learn MORE The shadow of the return to populism the politics of The good samaritan Populist of all parties
Brazil is only one front in a global war, weighs him with a triumphant crossing of the legs; a war that absorbs practically the whole world. “There is an ideological struggle between xenophobia and humanism, between the extremes, left-to-right, who have aligned on the streets to destroy the republican values and the forces of progress”, he stated. “Brazil is within this current global and, in some ways, its a populist leader is the most cartoonish of all.”
Question. When Trump won the presidency in 2016, you warned americans that, beyond the ideology of the winner, “million geniuses just come out of the lamp” with that victory. What would that alert today to the brazilians?
Response. I did two warnings when Trump went on to be elected. The guys came out of the lamp, and also signaled to the jews that take care of the gifts and affections of Trump. The affection is not born of true love it is very dangerous and has terrible side effects. The same thing he would say to the brazilians. The choice of Bolsonaro has liberated millions of guys. And I would say to them that they should care with these gestures of friendship apparent, that it is not that they reveal the lie tomorrow, that can have a meaning unexpected and sad morning. I have not seen in history a time in which the jews do not end up as victims.
Q. It has been deployed especially against the Brexit in the last few years. Do you share the comparisons of that vote and the victory of Bolsonaro belong to the same temper tantrum destructive against the established order?
A. The Brexit is not destroying the establishment; the Brexit is the establishment. Boris Johnson, the people that cry out for separation, are establishment. What is it that destroys the Brexit? The United Kingdom. Not the establishment. In the same way, Bolsonaro will not do any damage to the establishment, he does to Brazil. Or you could let them, at least. He is part of the establishment, the worst of the Army, and the worst of the right side of what alteration cave. And if it is a weapon of destruction, it is not the destruction of the elites, but of what was built in this country since that, more or less, ended the military dictatorship (1964-1985).
Q. He, however, declares war on the left and get to the right leaves you in peace, motivated perhaps by that common enemy. Betkanyon But is it not more enemy Bolsonaro?
A. The victory of Bolsonaro is a defeat of the left, but it is a defeat much more important than the right. Bolsonaro has devoured. That's right liberal, clean, republican, who wanted to build a country back to dictatorship, that right is the main objective of Bolsonaro. You want to finish it and in part it has succeeded. Today is out of the game.
P. Bolsonaro has gotten millions of people to speak of the left as a single entity that encompasses the former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to venezuela's Hugo Chavez...
R. [interrupting] there's No comparison between Lula and Chávez. Yes, there is one between Chavez and Bolsonaro, who belong to the same family of leaders: a populist, a liar, and leaders that do not care about their country. Lula may have made mistakes, I don't know, perhaps let us know the day you will be judged with justice. But, for me, until now, was a leader good and decent for Brazil, and his presidency was a time honorable in the history of the country. Bolsonaro and Chavez, or Bolsonaro and Mature, they have more similarities between themselves than differences.
Q. For almost 40 years and, until recently, he said that we need to “break left”, to quote Maurice Clavel, to beat the right. What holds it still today?
A. The left is already broken. You have on the one hand, Lula in Brazil, [the former socialist François] Hollande in France, or [the former Italian prime minister Matteo] Renzi in Italy, great leaders of the left west who separated themselves from the other left, the false one, the radical. In France there is no relationship between president Hollande and [the leader of the left-alternative French, Jean-Luc] Mélechon. This dissociation has already occurred there, and in Italy also. The true crack, and this exists in Europe and in Latin America, is the populism against the principles humanists, universalists and reformers. Lula is the personification of this difference. He is the left humanist, the true, the one defending the people's interests against the nationalism, the xenophobia and lies. Against the temptations of Chavez. But your story has not ended.
Q. The elections were won by the populists have not been devoid of candidates, let's say, traditional, acceptable, left and right. Are you worried about losing certain ways?
R. Left and right no longer matter. The only power that there is, right now, is that we live in a time populist. With the help of the Internet and social networks, the subculture of the television, we went through a time that gives an advantage to populist leaders. And every politician-republican, democratic, reasonable, old school, must be adapted to the new situation. This is not yet done, but will have to do in order not to be devoured by this huge monster that is emerging throughout the world.
Q. you have to adapt or fight back?
A. it Will take time. The dark times never last forever. In the years twenty, thirty and fifty, had in the west, crowds of people against the democracy. And yet prevalecior. I think that now the same thing will occur. What I am sure is not going to defeat the new populism using their same weapons. The democrats must have the courage not to fall into this trap. They have to defend their values even if for a season they are a minority and do not listen to them enough. If they abandon their values will have been lost.
Q. The world is coming to that paradox of having to defend the democracy when the majority is going with another she?
A. The dream of many leaders is to end up with democracy. Trump, Bolsonaro, [Viktor] Orban in Hungary. But in America, we are seeing the extent to which democracy is able to withstand. The real wall american is not the one that Trump wants to build between the united States and Mexico, but the american civil society has erected to him. Trump is not free to do what she wants and is giving head-butting against the wall. Maybe you will end up breaking the head, we'll see. And what I want to Brazil is something like that, which will reveal a wall of democracy, and will plant face to the vulgarity, stupidity and lack of ideas.