MUTUM OPERATION – THE VATICINIO
In 1941 the already famous Austrian writer Stefan Zweig, who had chosen Brazil as a place to live next to his second wife, Charlotte Elizabeth Altmann, but known as Lotte, fleeing the atrocities committed in Europe during World War II, published the book “Brasilien ein land der zukunft” – “Brazil, a Country of the Future”, in which I wove wide accolades to our country. They lived in Petrópolis, in Rio de Janeiro, where they committed suicide in 1942. The writer left a statement, in which he wrote: “Before leaving life of my own free will, with my lucid mind, I impose my last obligation; give a loving thanks to this wonderful country that is Brazil, which provided me, my work and me, so kind and hospitable den. Every day I learned to love this country more and more and nowhere could I rebuild my life, now that the world of my language is lost and my spiritual home, Europe, is self-destructing. After 60 years, unusual forces are needed to start all over again. Those I own have been exhausted in these long years of helpless pilgrimages. So, in good time and upright conduct, I thought it best to conclude a life in which intellectual labor was the purest joy and personal freedom the most precious asset on Earth. I greet all my friends. Let them be allowed to see the dawn of this long night. I, too impatient, go before. Stefan Zweig ”.
Zweig did not see the dawn after the end of the Second World War, with the defeat of Hitler, the destruction and reconstruction of Germany, the appearance of the Cold War and the division of the world into two distinct blocks: a capitalist, led by the United States of North America and a communist, under the leadership of the Soviet Union. Nor did he see the fulfillment of his prophecy that Brazil was the Country of the Future.
From 1964, with the Revolution, Brazil had become, according to its military rulers, a New Brazil.
To reinforce this statement, in 1975, when the Mutum incident occurred, they presented their achievements, with emphasis on the construction of the Transamazônica Highway, Rio Niterói Bridge, Itaipu Hydroelectric Plants, Tucuruí, Ilha Solteira, Jupiá, Ferrovia do Aço, Power Plants Nuclear Power Plants of Angra I and Angra II, creation of the National Social Security Institute / INPS, FUNRURAL, construction of the Port of Maranhão, among others.
Military governments proclaimed what was then known as the “Brazilian Miracle”.
To confirm this pride, in 1974 President Richard Milhous Nixon, the 37th elected President of the USA, shortly before becoming the first American president to resign his term, told President Garrastazu Médici that, “wherever Brazil will go America Latin ”seeking to demonstrate that, for that country, Brazil should position itself as a leader among the other countries in Latin America. Therefore, keeping it in line with the United States was the main intention of the American government.
The Military Government tried, in every way, including promoting violent repression to its opponents, to show Brazil as a country that had taken a leap towards development.
The country began to be presented to the world, by the government officials, as a progressive, developmentalist nation, on the way to becoming a great power. In the economy, middle-class consumerism was stimulated, which was emerging as a new social force. The progress and development proclaimed by all, meant that there was a race to improve life and social ascension. At the same time, the government also strengthened its entire repressive apparatus and, based on its National Security Doctrine, sought to internationalize the entire Brazilian economic process and, at the same time, eliminate internal sources of resistance. This resistance, which was already being spread to the interior of the country and to some other South American countries, such as our border neighbors Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru, Venezuela and Colombia, in addition to Chile and Ecuador, in Pacific coast.
In some of these countries, democratic regimes also suffered an interruption in the same period that military power prevailed in Brazil, being replaced by dictatorships, civil or military.
The concern with National Security was justified by the Brazilian government as necessary to ensure the country continues its growth in a safe manner, preventing the systematic advance of communism.
In this sense, General Breno Borges Fortes, then commander of the Army’s General Staff, when giving a speech in Caracas, Venezuela, during the 10th Conference of American Armies, published in the Jornal da Tarde of September 10, 1973, said, referring to to those who opposed the government that “The enemy uses mimicry, adapts to any environment and uses all means, lawful and illicit, to achieve its goals. He disguises himself as a priest or a teacher, a student or a peasant, a vigilant defender of democracy or an advanced intellectual; he goes to the countryside and to schools, to factories and churches, to the chair and the judiciary; in short, it will play any role it deems convenient to deceive, lie and win the good faith of Western peoples. Hence why the Armies’ concern in terms of the continent’s security must consist of maintaining internal security against the main enemy; this enemy, for Brazil, remains the subversion caused and fueled by the international communist movement. ”
To conform to the Doctrine of National Security, the revolutionary government, in addition to creating military bodies such as the National Information Service / SNI, the Army Information Center / CIE, the Aeronautics Information Center / CISA and the reformulation of the Information from the Navy / CENIMAR, which has been in operation since 1964, created Operation Bandeirantes / OBAN, in São Paulo, financed with funds from national and international companies, divided into three types of operations carried out 24 hours a day: searches, interrogation and analysis. Operation OBAN, as it became known, counted as military elements of the three weapons of the Armed Forces, the Federal Police, the State Police and even the Fire Department. Its operational cost was very high, due to the operations it carried out, having been necessary, for its financing, a system of permanent collection of resources between national and foreign businessmen operating in Brazil, who supported the military coup and feared the increase of communist influence in Latin America, via Cuba.
Brazil’s presence in the region came to be seen as of such importance, that some tougher Brazilian and American military sectors began to discuss the need to make the country, in the shortest possible time, an atomic power.
Thus, they could counterbalance the offensive of the USSR by trying to use the Caribbean island of Cuba as an advanced spearhead, placing some nuclear warheads on it, considering it is located so close to the Americans, as if it were part of their own backyard.
The Brazilian nuclear dream dates back to the distant 1930s, with the beginning of research related to nuclear physics being done at the University of São Paulo. Then, little by little, they spread to other Universities, spread across the country, such as Belo Horizonte, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo.
Those scientists who dreamed of Brazil as an atomic power already had, in the 1950s, research institutes equipped with experimental atomic reactors and their own groups of researchers working in sophisticated laboratories.
More precisely, on January 15, 1951, the National Research Center – CNPq was created by the government, responsible for coordinating and guiding all scientific production, and for the development of science and technology in Brazil. It was certainly a major step taken by the country towards development that would lead to the search for a nuclear policy. Agreements and partnerships for the exchange of information have been signed between the Governments of Brazil and the United States since the 1940s.
Through these agreements, Brazil intended to have access to the technologies that made possible the domain of atomic energy. The United States was also interested, in addition to aligning Brazil with its anti-communist policies, to have access to the atomic ores that exist in some areas of our territory, mainly Uranium.
On October 4, 1967, President Arthur da Costa e Silva, at a ministerial meeting held at Palácio do Planalto, in Brasília, officially launched the Brazilian nuclear energy program, known as the National Nuclear Energy Policy.
On June 1, 1968, in New York, in the United States, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty was signed by 190 countries, which came into force on March 5, 1970. The Brazilian government did not sign the Treaty and, in 1971, acquired from the American company Westinghouse its first nuclear reactor, which was installed at the Nuclear Power Plant of Angra I, located in Angra dos Reis, a city on the coast of Rio de Janeiro, whose construction work began in March 1972.
Brazil, Country of the Future, imagined by the Austrian writer Stefan Zweig in the 1940s, has now become nuclear, in the 1970s. In the Government’s view, the New Brazil began.