versión impresa ISSN 0102-8529
SANTISO, Carlos. Promotion and protection of democracy in brazilian foreign policy. Contexto int. [online]. 2002, vol.24, n.2, pp. 397-431. ISSN 0102-8529. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-85292002000200002.
Brazilian foreign policy has displayed both continuity and change with the restoration of democracy in 1985. While Brazil has significantly strengthened its normative commitment to promoting democracy, based on a principled defence of the national interest, its engagement for the defence of democracy abroad has been hemmed in by its traditional attachment to the principle of national sovereignty. Brazilian foreign policy has nevertheless significantly evolved since the return to civilian rule. Fernando Henrique Cardoso's presidential diplomacy has provided a decisive impetus for strengthening Brazil's normative commitment to democracy, both through the introduction of democracy clauses in regional institutions and its own bilateral relations. However, there exist an inherent tension between the dual objectives of Brazilian foreign policy, which generates ambiguity in the conduct of foreign policy. There exist multifaceted trade-offs between the principles of democratic interference and national sovereignty, as well as between the twin goals of stability and democracy. This study explores this tension by assessing Brazil's efforts at promoting democracy abroad and its response to threats to democracy and flawed elections during the last decade. It examines ten cases where democracy was at risk. It argues the principled defence of the national interest, on which Brazilian democracy promotion rests, is unlikely to survive Cardoso's presidency. Brazil needs to successfully resolve the inherent tension between the principle of national sovereignty and its commitment to promoting and protecting democracy abroad, both to clarify its foreign policy objectives and strengthen regional collective action mechanisms.
Palabras llave : Brazil; Foreign Policy; Democracy Promotion.