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Viewing cable 06SAOPAULO530, MEDIA REACTION: WESTERN HEMISPHERE: BRAZIL: WAVE OF

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06SAOPAULO530 2006-05-16 14:02 2011-02-11 00:12 UNCLASSIFIED Consulate Sao Paulo
VZCZCXYZ0001
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHSO #0530 1361413
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 161413Z MAY 06
FM AMCONSUL SAO PAULO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5062
INFO RHEHNSC/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA PRIORITY 6201
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO PRIORITY 7104
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC 2433
UNCLAS SAO PAULO 000530 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE INR/R/MR; IIP/R/MR; WHA/PD 
 
DEPT PASS USTR 
 
USDOC 4322/MAC/OLAC/JAFEE 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: KMDR OPRC OIIP ETRD BR
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: WESTERN HEMISPHERE: BRAZIL: WAVE OF 
CRIMINAL ATTACKS AGAINST SAO PAULO POLICE; SAO PAULO 

1. "Frightened Society" Economic columnist Celso Ming commented in center-right O Estado de S. Paulo (5/16): "The facility with which organized crime is successfully spreading terror can be analyzed from several points of view. One of them is the economic viewpoint. This is a nation of the informal economy.... It is a nation of smuggling and illegal arms trade. Such schemes cannot exist by themselves. They need other informal and illicit structures such as money laundering and the formation of mafias. They lead to other [society] deforming activities like blackmail and corruption.... This situation results in other relations of power (political relations) that oppose the State and try to create parallel institutions.... An essential part of such games is the promiscuity of relations between the two worlds, the formal and the informal. Police sectors playing the double standard game abound. They include the governor, who, through his secretary of public security, negotiates with these people, and can also be seen in the involvement of politicians whose electoral campaigns are partially financed by organized crime. The authorities' lack of power is a consequence of such promiscuity.... Severely sick, the society is frightened. History has shown us what happens when fear replaces hope." 

2. "Terrorist Attack" The lead editorial in center-right O Estado de S. Paulo (5/16) remarked: "Never in Brazil's history has a criminal organization gone so far in confronting governmental institutions.... The tragic balance of the attack has shown the increase of organized crime's insolence, which has placed in a defensive position those who are responsible for public security and should persecute it instead.... In Brazil, where for a long time society has been the hostage of organized crime, what has prevailed is an absurd tolerance of criminals.... This is why the situation only deteriorates." 

3. "We Must Not Be Intimidated" Liberal Folha de S. Paulo (5/16) editorialized: "The attacks are no longer targeting only public security agents, but now include actions aimed at spreading panic among the population. Dozens of burned urban buses are emblematic of such intimidating tactics.... On the one hand, the gang imprisoned in penitentiaries and its followers outside them are attempting to form terrorist organizations. On the other hand, the population, especially those living in the Greater Sao Paulo area, is facing an unprecedented situation and has been compelled to quickly develop new reaction patterns.... What the bandits who have caused savagery want, is that the population bends to their fear tactics and retreats so that they can carry out their criminal activities more freely.... Both the authorities and the population must vehemently fight such an affront. It is not a time to retreat. The government must transmit confidence to the people. It must tell the citizens to return to work and to school for the police will restore public order and will face with its maximum force the gangs that are violating the rule of law. The moment is a decisive one: either we react with firmness or we will be doomed to become accustomed to terror." 

Wolfe