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Trump Praises Bolsonaro As Brazilian Leader Lets Amazon Burn

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Trump Praises Bolsonaro As Brazilian Leader Lets Amazon Burn

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Jair Bolsonaro and Donald Trump

Trump praised Brazil’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, after he rejected millions of dollars in international aid pledged to help fight fires in the Amazon rainforest.

“I have gotten to know President @jairbolsonaro well in our dealings with Brazil,” Trump wrote on Tuesday. “He is working very hard on the Amazon fires and in all respects doing a great job for the people of Brazil – Not easy. He and his country have the full and complete support of the USA!”

Trump’s support of the Brazilian authoritarian comes a day after Trump skipped the G-7 session in which climate change was discussed, and world leaders announced a $20 million aid package for the rainforest.

But Bolsonaro rejected the aid and complained about purported insults from French President Emmanuel Macron.

“[Bolsonaro] said that if Mr. Macron withdrew ‘insults made to my person,’ and what Mr. Bolsonaro interpreted as insinuations that Brazil does not have sovereignty over the Amazon, he would reconsider,” the New York Times reported.

Bolsonaro has been described as a “second Trump” and has used incendiary and bigoted rhetoric that echoes Trump’s polarizing leadership style.

“Brazil’s president has long been notorious for his hateful and homophobic declarations – he once proclaimed that he would prefer a dead son to a gay one,” The Guardian reported.

“Since the start of August, Bolsonaro has called for criminals to ‘die on the streets like cockroaches’, described Argentina’s likely incoming leaders as ‘leftie crooks’, called a Brazilian journalist a ‘plonker’, lashed out at Norway and mocked Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel for challenging him over a surge in Amazon deforestation.”

Trump has repeatedly used the American presidency to prop up autocratic world leaders and to praise dictators and other officials who share his authoritarian world view.

Published with permission of The American Independent.

IMAGE: Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro (left) meets President Donald Trump at the White House.

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