Sarah Palin FaceBook (First Cars, Now Foreign Oil) — Petrobras Tupi Petro Fields — Defense Talk (Lobbying For FAB Fighter Contract)— WSJ (Obama Underwrites Offshore Drilling) — WMD (Brazil’s Pursuit of a Nuclear Submarine Raises Proliferation Concerns)


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“Brazil is becoming more aware of its place in the world,

Brazil wants to be a player on the world stage.”

– Joseph McAndrew, IDS


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YOUR TAX DOLLARS HARD AT WORK: FIRST CARS, NOW FOREIGN OIL

Today’s Wall Street Journal contains some puzzling news for all Americans who are impacted by high energy prices and who share the goal of moving us toward energy independence.

For years, states rich with an abundance of oil and natural gas have been begging Washington, DC politicians for the right to develop their own natural resources on federal lands and off shore. Such development would mean good paying jobs here in the United States (with health benefits) and the resulting royalties and taxes would provide money for federal coffers that would potentially off-set the need for higher income taxes, reduce the federal debt and deficits, or even help fund a trillion dollar health care plan if one were so inclined to support such a plan.

So why is it that during these tough times, when we have great needs at home, the Obama White House is prepared to send more than two billion of your hard-earned tax dollars to Brazil so that the nation’s state-owned oil company, Petrobras, can drill off shore and create jobs developing its own resources? That’s all Americans want; but such rational energy development has been continually thwarted by rabid environmentalists, faceless bureaucrats and a seemingly endless parade of lawsuits aimed at shutting down new energy projects.

I’ll speak for the talent I have personally witnessed on the oil fields in Alaska when I say no other country in the world has a stronger workforce than America, no other country in the world has better safety standards than America, and no other country in the world has stricter environmental standards than America. Come to Alaska to witness how oil and gas can be developed simultaneously with the preservation of our eco-system. America has the resources.

We deserve the opportunity to develop our resources no less than the Brazilians. Millions of Americans know it is true: “Drill, baby, drill.” Alaska is proof you can drill and develop, and preserve nature, with its magnificent caribou herds passing by the Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS), completely unaffected. One has to wonder if Obama is playing politics and perhaps refusing a “win” for some states just to play to the left with our money.

The new Gulf of Mexico lease sales tomorrow sound promising and perhaps will move some states in the right direction, but we all know that the extreme environmentalists who serve to block progress elsewhere, including in Alaska, continue to block opportunities.

These environmentalists are putting our nation in peril and forcing us to rely on unstable and hostile foreign countries. Mr. Obama can stop the extreme tactics and exert proper government authority to encourage resource development and create jobs and health benefits in the U.S.; instead, he chooses to use American dollars in Brazil that will help to pay the salaries and benefits for Brazilians to drill for resources when the need and desire is great in America.

Buy American is a wonderful slogan, but you can’t say in one breath that you want to strengthen our economy and stimulate it, and then in another ship our much-needed dollars to a nation desperate to drill while depriving us of the same opportunity.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009- Sarah Palin


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Team Obama approved a nuclear energy program for the UAE in May. But, Obama and the Pelosi-Reid Democrats will not allow nuclear energy expansion in the United States.

Already this year democrats banned offshore drilling, scrapped oil and gas leases in Utah and opened the 111th Congress by introducing a bill to permanently prohibit drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).

But, Team Obama is going to lend billions of dollars to Brazil to finance exploration of its huge offshore oil field discovery. Unreal.

For decades, Democrats have blocked efforts to responsibly develop this nation’s energy resources, transforming vast areas of opportunity into “The No Zone.”

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Brazilian state-run energy giant Petrobras has discovered light oil at a well in the offshore Campos Basin. According to a press release, Petrobras discovered light petroleum in the BM-C-36 block, which is operated exclusively by Petrobras.

Petrobras said the discovery was made by drilling well 1-BRSA-713-RJS (1-RJS-661), informally known as Aruana, in Exploratory Concession BM-C-36 (Block C-M-401). Preliminary analyses indicate not only the estimation of recoverable volumes around 280 million barrels of light oil (28 API), but also good productivity. Block BM-C-36 was acquired in the seventh round of bidding held by the National Petroleum Agency (ANP) in October 2005.

The discovery well is located nearly 120 km off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, at a water depth of 976.5 meters. The discovery was proved though a lined well formation test, in reservoirs located at depths ranging from 2,993 to 3,123 meters and will be the object of Discovery Assessment Plan to be submitted to the ANP.

Source: Petrobras


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One Campaign Promise Obama Kept: Shower His Friends with Money

Flopping Aces: Posted by: Mike’s America, August 19, 2009

In 2008 Michelle Malkin penned a column in which she described the payoffs in store for George Soros and friends if Obama were elected. Funny how quickly Obama has been able to keep that promise.

George Soros stands to make hundreds of millions in profit from a loan by the U.S. to Petrobas for offshore drilling. Why is no one surprised? Perhaps as a thank you gesture, George Soros has been pouring millions of dollars of his ill-gotten gains into the Obama Hell Care racket.

While this may be one of the biggest payoffs by the Chicago thugocracy which currently occupies the White House it wasn’t the first. The Stimulus Bill included hefty payoffs to ACORN, the community agitator organization which has played a key role in the health care debate when they are not too busy falsifying voter registration forms. ACORN also stands to gain millions more if the health bill passes. Stimulus spending also went largely to areas that supported Obama’s election.

Let’s not forget the auto workers union. They gained control of billions of assets in GM and Chrysler after spending $4.5 million on behalf of Obama in the 2008 campaign. And what about all those investment bankers on Wall Street that had their jobs saved by Obama along with their huge bonuses now underwritten by the U.S. Treasury?

And how about the The Cap and Trade crowd? Big corporations and Obama backers like General Electric and more greedy Wall Street tycoons stand to rake in billions if the bill passes.

Some may want to say this is all one big coincidence. Oh… sure it is! Right! And I bet those who do think that still believe in the Tooth Fairy!

A thugocracy by any other name STILL STINKS!


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Lobbying steps up ahead of Brazil jet fighter decision

Air Force News — By Agence France-Presse on August 21, 2009

Sao Paulo: French, Swedish and US defense companies pursuing a four-billion-dollar deal to replace Brazil’s aging fleet of fighter jets are stepping up lobbying efforts ahead of a decision expected within the next couple of months.

The intensification of the campaigns comes after Brazil’s likely announcement was pushed back from September to October at the earliest in order to ask “incredibly detailed” technical questions of the three competitors, a source in one of the companies said.

France’s Dassault, which is fielding its high-tech Rafale fighter, had been seen as the frontrunner up to now because of a guarantee to share all technology with Brazil — a key requirement of the tender.

But Sweden’s Saab, offering a new generation of its cost-effective Gripen jet, and US aerospace giant Boeing, plugging its F/A-18 Super Hornet, have sought to blunt that advantage.

Saab president Ake Svensson told reporters in Sao Paulo on Thursday that not only would Gripen technology be offered, but Brazil stood to benefit by participating in future exports of the Swedish jet, which is poised to go into production.

Bob Kemp, Saab’s sales and marketing director, said that because the supply chains for Dassault and Boeing were already defined, “we have a program and they have products” to offer.

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Boeing’s executive vice-president, Jim Albaugh, likewise stressed to journalists last week in Sao Paulo that the US Congress was being asked to allow an “unprecedented” level of technology-sharing with Brazil around the F/A-18.

At stake is not only the right to supply Brazil with 36 modern fighters to replace its 12 outdated French Mirage jets from 2014 — but also a chance to carry a winner’s glow into a much bigger, 10-billion-dollar tender India has underway to buy 126 fighters.

The chosen aircraft will be the spearpoint of Brazil’s air force for the next three decades.

Brazil, which struck a deal last year to buy four French submarines and co-develop a nuclear sub, is seeking the military clout to match its growing economic power and regional political ambitions.

Jean-Marc Merialdo, the head of Dassault’s office in Brazil, told AFP on Thursday there was still some time to go before the winner was decided and a contract signed.

“Let’s uncork the champagne once it’s signed,” he said, expressing caution.

He said he was confident the Rafale was the best option on the table, being more sophisticated and maneuverable than the F/A-18 and more powerful than the Gripen.

He also noted that France’s technology-sharing was certain, while US technology — which applied to part of the Gripen, whose engine is made by General Electric — was subject to political approval by US lawmakers, who have resisted such transfers in the past.

Boeing, though, has pointed out that the Rafales were costly and none have yet been sold outside of France, while the F/A-18 has been taken up by the Australian air force.

Saab empahsizes that its Gripen is the cheapest option of the three, and is built to land on highways — a consideration for Brazil, which has to police the vast Amazon jungle.

Brazil’s media had said an air force evaluation of the three jets was to be submitted to the government this month, with a possible decision announced on September 7 — during Brazil’s Independence Day celebrations which, coincidentally or not, French President Nicolas Sarkozy had been invited to attend.

But the bidding companies said the air force report now would not be ready until next month, pushing back the whole process — and giving them more time to make their respective pitches.


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Obama Underwrites Offshore Drilling

Too bad it’s not in U.S. waters.

You read that headline correctly. Unfortunately, the Obama Administration is financing oil exploration off Brazil.

The U.S. is going to lend billions of dollars to Brazil’s state-owned oil company, Petrobras, to finance exploration of the huge offshore discovery in Brazil’s Tupi oil field in the Santos Basin near Rio de Janeiro. Brazil’s planning minister confirmed that White House National Security Adviser James Jones met this month with Brazilian officials to talk about the loan.

The U.S. Export-Import Bank tells us it has issued a “preliminary commitment” letter to Petrobras in the amount of $2 billion and has discussed with Brazil the possibility of increasing that amount. Ex-Im Bank says it has not decided whether the money will come in the form of a direct loan or loan guarantees. Either way, this corporate foreign aid may strike some readers as odd, given that the U.S. Treasury seems desperate for cash and Petrobras is one of the largest corporations in the Americas.

But look on the bright side. If President Obama has embraced offshore drilling in Brazil, why not in the old U.S.A.? The land of the sorta free and the home of the heavily indebted has enormous offshore oil deposits, and last year ahead of the November elections, with gasoline at $4 a gallon, Congress let a ban on offshore drilling expire.

The Bush Administration’s five-year plan (2007-2012) to open the outer continental shelf to oil exploration included new lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico. But in 2007 environmentalists went to court to block drilling in Alaska and in April a federal court ruled in their favor. In May, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said his department was unsure whether that ruling applied only to Alaska or all offshore drilling. So it asked an appeals court for clarification. Late last month the court said the earlier decision applied only to Alaska, opening the way for the sale of leases in the Gulf. Mr. Salazar now says the sales will go forward on August 19.

This is progress, however slow. But it still doesn’t allow the U.S. to explore in Alaska or along the East and West Coasts, which could be our equivalent of the Tupi oil fields, which are set to make Brazil a leading oil exporter. Americans are right to wonder why Mr. Obama is underwriting in Brazil what he won’t allow at home.


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A Brazilian Nuclear Submarine: The Improbable Dream?

“Why not dream big and say that we want to reach the point where a nuclear submarine is a possibility?”President Lula de Silva, July 10, 2007


Facts About the Proposed Ex-Im Bank Loans

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Petrobras’ Brazilian Offshore Oil Exploration and Development

Background on Ex-Im Bank:

Charges and facts:

Charge: The U.S. government is giving away more than $2 billion in taxpayer dollars to Brazil’s largest oil and gas company to drill for oil in Brazil.

Fact: The Bank has approved a preliminary commitment to lend up to $2 billion to Petrobras for the purchase of American-made goods and services. The funds will go to American exporters as payment for their sales to the company. Of note, the Bank is self-sustaining and no taxpayer dollars are involved.

Charge: The loans to Petrobras represent a giveaway of U.S. tax dollars.

Fact: The Bank’s activities do not cost the American taxpayer a dime. In fact, since 1992 the American people netted more than $4.9 billion and the jobs those exports created.

Charge: America is exporting jobs to Brazil as a result of the loans.

Fact: Only American made goods and services qualify for Ex-Im Bank loans or guarantees. This is the government doing what it’s supposed to do – helping to create U.S. jobs, making sure that Americans get a fair shot at selling goods and services, and helping American workers compete on a level playing field against foreign competition.

Charge: The loan to Petrobras represents a reversal of the Obama Administration’s policies on off-shore drilling.

Fact: The Bank’s bipartisan Board unanimously approved the preliminary commitment to Petrobras on April 14, 2009, before any Obama appointees joined the Bank. In fact, at the time the Bank’s Board consisted of three Republicans and two Democrats, all of whom were appointed by George W. Bush.

Read Chairman Hochberg’s Letter to the Editor that appeared in the August 21, 2009 editions of the Wall Street Journal. (See Below)

Letter to the Editor, Wall Street Journal


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Brazil Loan Helps U.S. Manufacturers

Your editorial “Obama Underwrites Offshore Drilling” (Aug. 18) more correctly should have read, “Obama Underwrites U.S. Jobs.” That’s because the mandate of the Export-Import Bank of the U.S. (Ex-Im Bank) is to help create and sustain U.S. jobs by financing U.S. exports. Our offer to provide financing to Brazil’s state-owned oil company Petrobras does exactly that.

That’s what is behind our decision to offer at least $2 billion in loans or loan guarantees to help finance purchases of U.S. goods and services by Petrobras. This increases the likelihood that American—not foreign—workers will be employed to satisfy part of the company’s planned $175 billion investment during the next five years.

Ex-Im Bank does not make U.S. policy. In fact, our charter prohibits us from turning down financing for either nonfinancial or noncommercial reasons, except in rare circumstances including failure to meet our environmental standards.

We make no grants. The vast majority of our financing consists of guarantees of loans made by commercial lenders, not Ex-Im Bank direct loans. The foreign buyers that use Ex-Im Bank products pay us in full. Over the past 16 years the fees that we collect have netted American taxpayers more than $4.9 billion plus the jobs those exports have created. Thanks to the fees we charge, the bank is self-sustaining and does not receive any appropriated funds from Congress.

At a time when jobs, and exports, are more important than ever in helping our economy recover, Ex-Im Bank is achieving its mission to keep Americans working, and we’re doing it without burdening the U.S. taxpayer.

Fred P. Hochberg
Chairman and President
Export-Import Bank of the U.S
Washington


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“We have to choose the padlock that befits the riches in the safe.”

General José Benedito de Barros Moreira

Brazil’s dogged pursuit of a nuclear submarine has brought to the surface the question of whether Brazil is keeping open its nuclear weapon option. A few years ago, it would have been unthinkable for a high-level military adviser to state in a public forum that Brazil should consider developing nuclear weapons technology and breach its NPT obligations.

Brazil’s quest appears to be fueled by the prestige associated with mastering nuclear technology, a desire to win a permanent seat at the UN Security Council with the five NPT nuclear weapons states, a potential arms race with Venezuela, and the hopes of attaining regional leadership.



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Brazil’s Pursuit of a Nuclear Submarine Raises Proliferation Concerns

A Nuclear “Padlock”?

One of Defense Minister Jobim’s key advisers on the national defense policy is General José Benedito de Barros Moreira. A senior four-star Army officer and former commander of the Brazilian War College, Moreira also heads the Political, Strategic, and International Relations Secretariat at the Defense Ministry. (In March 2008, Moreira will become the military adviser to the Brazilian Permanent Mission to the United Nations in Geneva.)

In an October 13, 2007 interview, Moreira argued that a nuclear submarine was essential to protect Brazil’s vast natural resources — and those yet to be discovered. He asserted that Brazil, with its biofuels and off-shore oil fields, must invest in defense as it was becoming a mid-level power: “We have to choose the padlock that befits the riches in the safe.”

A month later, on November 13, during the television program, “Expressão Nacional,” Moreira reiterated his theme that Brazil needs a strong “padlock” because its natural riches make it a target, and astonished the other program participants — two congressmen and a university professor — by asserting that Brazil should develop the technology necessary for an atom bomb. [11] As quoted in a November 16 O Estado de Sao Paulo article, Moreira stated: “We must have in Brazil the future possibility, if the State agrees, of developing a nuclear device. We cannot be oblivious to the world’s reality.”

Moreira acknowledged that atomic bomb technology would breach Brazil’s obligations as a non-nuclear weapon state member of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT); however, he asserted that a country would be entitled to ignore the treaty when a neighboring country builds an atomic bomb or “when the State feels threatened.” While Moreira admitted that he sees the world as an increasingly violent and dangerous, with troubling signs of conflict among Brazil’s neighbors, he did not advocate Brazil’s immediately building a weapon: “I am not arguing that we should develop a nuclear device. No nation can feel safe if it does not develop the technology enabling it to defend itself when necessary.”

Congressman Raul Jungmann (Popular Socialist Party, Pernambuco) indicated that while he understood the “realism” of Moreira’s statement, he condemned the possible violation of the NPT. Another program panelist, Congressman Jose Genoino (Worker’s Party, Sao Paulo) objected to Moreira’s veiled reference to Venezuela as a potential military target and noted that development of a nuclear device is distinct from the development of a nuclear-powered submarine, which Moreira also supports.

Although there did not appear to be any direct official response to Moreira’s comments, the troubling question of developing nuclear weapons began to shadow questions related to building a nuclear-powered submarine and the Navy’s uranium enrichment activities.

On November 15, during the opening of an international security conference in Rio de Janeiro, Defense Minister Jobim once again argued that Brazil needed a nuclear submarine to protect the recently discovered Tupi oil field, located in the Santos Basin off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, that will increase Brazil’s reserves by more than 50 percent. He was quick to add, however, that Brazil needed to have the ability to complete the uranium enrichment cycle for production of propulsion systems, and “not for the war area, atomic bombs. Those things are nonsense.”

Similarly, in December 2007, when Eletronuclear Director Vice Admiral Othon Luiz Pinheiro da Silva was asked by a Jornal do Brasil reporter whether he was in favor of building an atomic bomb, he responded, “We do not have rivalry problems with other countries. That would add nothing and could even cause the political unbalancing of the region. Our uranium is only for generating [electric] energy.”



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Lula Wants His Yellow Submarine

O Estado zeroes in on the restless musings now taking place in the Brazilian armed forces: “Two-thirds of the air force’s planes are grounded due to lack of replacement parts. The air force does not have any medium-range-to-air and air-to-ground missiles, attack helicopters or the so-called ‘intelligent bombs’ which are part of the equiptment of its Chilean, Peruvian and Venezuelan counterparts. Furthermore, only half of the navy’s combat ships are fit for their intended purpose. In the army the situation is no different. There is no money for ammunition, Brazilian tanks are all secondhand and most over 30 years old.” Does this sound like a country that could spend almost a billion dollars on nuclear submarine project, which will do nothing to upgrade or modernize the rest of the fleet?

… While it is true that Brazil wants to build a nuclear submarine, not a nuclear weapon, the feeling remains that Brazil has the potential to become a global nuclear power incrementally rather than spontaneously, if it chose to do so at all. It certainly has the resources and the personnel to carry out nuclear projects, and if you take Lula’s words to heart, he also seems to have the will. But the greatest source of energy currently fueling Brazil’s nuclear dream does not derive from nuclear fission as much as it comes from Brazil’s growing sense of ultimate grandeur—that it is destined to be a superpower this century, as well as belonge to the nuclear club, which could help the country’s image.

…Lula’s critics insist that, instead of allocating hundreds of millions of dollars to a nuclear submarine program, why not address the multiple social problems pressing Brazil? These include environmental and anti-poverty initiatives to constructively impact Brazil’s current social ills. Instead, Lula has decided to turn to acquiring a trophy military weapon that couldn’t be less relevant to Brazil’s immediate future as a great nation and Latin America’s current concerns. But this could be unwise and will only further provoke regional tensions. Among others, one must wonder what will be the reaction in Buenos Aires, with an Argentine military still nursing its wounds over its defeat in the Falklands.

… By deciding to build a nuclear submarine, Lula is reviving the old dreams of the Brazilian military. At the same time, he has certainly given reason to the Argentine navy to push for even a bigger defense budget at a time when the country is still recuperating from the 2001 economic meltdown. Both the Brazilian and Argentine security forces have dark pasts that have sullied their countries’ good names. The possession of a nuclear submarine might provide both militaries with an increased status that would be prejudicial to the two countries’ still not completely stabilized democracies, but might equip them with a sense of arrogance to question their subordination to civilian rule.

Curiously, the aspiration to acquire a nuclear submarine comes at a time when the Brazilian military is going through a process of upgrading its conventional equipment. During a September trip to Spain, in spite of the obvious disenchantment felt by many of Lula’s senior military colleagues over the poor state of affairs of Brazil’s Armed Forces, Lula told the Spanish daily El País “in the 1970s, we had modern factories that built tanks […]

But they have been dismantled. Brazil must return to what it had. To rebuild our weaponry factories, we must buy.” According to various reports, Brazil plans to raise military spending by 50 percent next year and is planning to modernize its conventional submarines, build missiles in cooperation with South Africa and purchase second-hand aircraft.

It could be persuasively argued that Brazil’s proposed nuclear submarine is an imprudent foreign policy move for Brazil to take. Conventional weaponry, in addition to the country’s geography, which features broad land buffers, should serve, as they have in the past, as a sufficient deterrent to dissuade other countries from attacking Brazil under any conceivable scenario…

Brazil is regionally and globally respected and would be the natural Latin America representative in the UN Security Council should it ever be reformed and expanded. In addition the country is presently besieged by a host of domestic problems, including widespread criminal violence and drug trafficking, aside from increasing gang warfare. With all of this on its plate, does it really need a submarine?

… O Estado, as cited by the Latin American Weekly Report: “‘For a long time the government has abandoned the armed forces to its own luck, in a display of disinterest in national defense and the way of life of Brazilians.’ The newspaper goes on to say that the pitiable situation of Brazil’s armed forces ‘does not match the ambitions’ of President Lula da Silva to lead South America in an ‘increasingly instable regional strategic environment.'”


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BRASÍLIA — President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil unveiled a new national defense strategy on Thursday, calling for upgrading the military forces and remaking the defense industry. The plan also called for a debate in Brazil on whether mandatory military service should be enforced and how the armed forces should be professionalized.

With the commanders of Brazil’s army, navy and air force in attendance, Mr. da Silva said in a speech here that Brazil, despite its pacifist history, needed a stronger defense against potential aggression if it was to continue on the road to becoming a global power.

The new strategic vision, more than a year in the making, calls for Brazil to invest more in military technology, including satellites, and to build a nuclear-powered submarine fleet that would be used to protect territorial waters and Brazil’s deepwater oil platforms. The proposal also calls for an expansion of the armed forces to protect the country’s Amazon borders and for retraining troops so they are capable of rapid-strike, guerrilla-style warfare.

“Brazil’s vision of its military’s role fits well with the country’s growing international seriousness and economic and institutional capacity,” said Michael Shifter, a vice president of the Inter-American Dialogue, a policy research group in Washington. “It is seeking to be a more cohesive national power, and that requires exercising full control over its vast territory and borders.”

Despite the country’s recent economic boom and the strong role the military has traditionally played in Brazilian society, military spending has been stagnant and troop levels have remained steady around 312,000, the government said. Brazil spent a lower proportion of its gross domestic product on defense in 2006 than four of its South American neighbors — Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Colombia — according to the Security and Defense Network of Latin America, a research group based in Buenos Aires.

The president’s new military strategy, outlined in a 101-page document, has been introduced as drug trafficking increases along Brazil’s Amazon borders and as some of the country’s neighbors — including Venezuela, Colombia and Chile — have been upgrading their militaries. Venezuela has been particularly active, buying $4 billion in arms from Russia. Brazilian officials denied that Venezuela’s bolstering of its armed forces or plans by the United States Navy to revive a Fourth Fleet to patrol the South Atlantic had directly influenced the creation of the new military strategy.

“We are not concerned by the strength of our neighbors, but we are concerned by our own weakness,” said Roberto Mangabeira Unger, the minister of strategic affairs and a co-author of the plan. “The national defense strategy is not a circumstantial response to circumstantial problems. It is a far-reaching inflection, a change of course and a change of direction.”

Relations between Brazil and Venezuela remain essentially friendly, and Latin American leaders are promoting regional unity as a way to weather the global recession. Mr. da Silva and President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela are pushing for the creation of a South American defense council, an idea that was discussed this week at a meeting in Brazil of leaders from Latin America and the Caribbean.

The new defense strategy does call for Brazil to become more independent of other countries’ military technology. It emphasizes a reorganization of the nation’s defense industry to focus on forming partnerships with other countries so that Brazil is involved in creating the new technologies. “We are no longer interested in buying weapons off the shelf,” Mr. Mangabeira Unger said.

Brazilian officials have approached a number of countries about potential partnerships, including the United States, India, France, Russia and Britain.

The Brazilian Army would be reshaped to be a more mobile, quick-strike force. Only about 10 percent of its soldiers are now trained for rapid deployment. The entire army would be reconstituted at the brigade level to be able to strike quickly, “so that a warrior would also be a guerrilla,” Mr. Mangabeira Unger said.

The plan also involved enforcing existing laws on mandatory conscription to draw people from all classes, not just the poorer ones, to make for a more highly skilled fighting force.

“This will be a novel debate for Brazil about national sacrifice,” Mr. Mangabeira Unger said. “There has been no moment in our national history when we have squarely had the kind of debate that I hope we will have now.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/19/world/americas/19brazil.html?ref=americas


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Former Aircraft Carrier HMAS Vengeance comes to a sad end in India –Ahoy – Mac’s Web Log


Related Links:

NYT Video:  Balancing Brazil’s Forests

Bloomberg: Soros Hedge Fund Bought Petrobras Stake Worth $811 Million

IBISWorld: Industry Market Research Reports

Michelle Malkin:  Obama, Soros, Petrobras, Brazil & offshore drilling double standards

Hot Air:  What Obama wouldn’t fund with $2B in loan guarantees & Good news: Obama backs off-shore drilling! Update: A Soros connection?

Gateway Pundit: Team Obama Funds Oil Drilling Project in Brazil… Nixes Offshore Drilling In US …Update: Soros Invested Heavily in Petrobras

CSM: Brazil oil giant, Petrobras, in corruption spotlight

Latin American Herald Tribune:  U.S. Government to Loan Brazil’s Petrobras $10 Billion

DoI:  Secretary Salazar Details Strategy for Comprehensive Energy Plan on U.S. Outer Continental Shelf

USNI:  Why Does Brazil Need Nuclear Submarines?

Domain-b:  Brazil, France sign $12-billion deal for submarines, helicopters news, 08 January 2009

France 24: Sarkozy visits Brazil in last tour as EU president

Defense News: Gen. José Elito Carvalho Siqueira

Epicos: Brazilian officials explain nuclear submarine programme

Satellite Today: Brazil Seeks Larger Place In Global Space Industry

Council on Hemispheric Affairs:  COHA REPORT Space Technology Comes to Latin America: Part of the Hemisphere’s Road to Autonomy

Council on Hemispheric Affairs:  COHA REPORT Lula Wants His Yellow Submarine

South Com: Rear Adm. Guillory Assumes Command of NAVSO, 4th Fleet


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