In ‘Peace and Love’ Remake, Lula Quotes the Bible, Says He’s Not Seeking Revenge

On the PT’s anniversary, the former president mentioned his imprisonment and emphasized social promises, avoiding confrontation

Lula at the PT Anniversary.
February 12, 2022 | 11:58 AM
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Bloomberg Línea — At the ceremony marking the 42 Anniversary of the PT, former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva gave an emotional speech in which he quoted a passage from the Bible to say that he is not thirsty for revenge and emphasized the social character of an eventual new mandate. In his speech to his most loyal allies, Lula once again embodied the “peace and love” costume that he was known for in the 2002 campaign, when he won his first presidential election.

Lula said that the speech was written to answer those who wonder if he “will want to take revenge on anyone, to persecute those who persecuted him”.

“We founded the PT to fight inequality, income concentration, hunger, inflation, unemployment, economic backwardness, Brazil’s subservience to foreign interests. We fought, and won, both in opposition and in government,” he said, reading the statement.

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“I was a victim of hatred, which cost me 580 days of unjust and illegal imprisonment, condemned to incurable longing for my loved ones and the Brazilian people, whom I love passionately. But I have always been, and will always be, above all hatreds, blessed by love. I learned in the Bible that ‘if I have not love, I am nothing,’” he stated, quoting a famous passage from Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians.

In another passage, he made another religious reference: “Jesus Christ, the most extraordinary human being that ever walked this planet, taught us the greatest lesson of all: Love one another.”

He did not mention Bolsonaro by name, but blamed the current government’s “criminal attitude and denial of science” for the deaths in the pandemic.

SOCIAL EMPHASIS: Speaking to his most loyal audience, the former president outlined what would be the social priorities of a new mandate, such as readjustment of the minimum wage above inflation, minimum wage to be readjusted above inflation, and promised to make fuel and electricity prices fit “again in the pockets of Brazilians”.

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Regarding state-owned companies, he said that Petrobrás (PETR4) and Eletrobrás (ELET6) should “return to being the patrimony of the Brazilian people” and that “no cattle” shall pass, a phrase that refers to environmental issues.

At the end, abandoning his reading of the document, he said: “The PT exists to take care of the oppressed people, to take care of those who never had a voice or a turn. That is why the PT has so many enemies, but be assured that the PT will continue in this battle, we will win this battle and Brazil will be a free and sovereign country and its people will be happy again”.

HUGS FOR DILMA: Before his speech, Lula gave a political stroke to his successor who lost her position as president in the impeachment process. Two weeks ago, he said Rousseff would not be part of a new PT government if elected.

“Dilma is one of the great injustices that the Brazilian elite chose to try to criminalize the PT. We in the PT, no matter how much someone may differ from you, cannot admit that any enemy of ours, a conservative who represents the backward elite, speak ill of you.”

The PT’s 42 anniversary event took place in virtual form. Leaders of the international left, like Jeremy Corbyn, of the British Labor Party, and Jean-Luc Mélenchon, of the France Insubmissa party, recorded videos honoring the party and wishing Lula luck in the presidential race.