Ten Female Officers Among Brazil’s New MINUSTAH Contingent

Ten Female Officers Among Brazil’s New MINUSTAH Contingent

By Dialogo
February 24, 2015




More than 200 female members of the Brazilian Military have served in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). Currently, 10 others are preparing to be deployed to the Caribbean country in May, when they will take part in the 22nd Brazilian Contingent of the peacekeeping mission.

One of these officials, Lieutenant Coronel Maria das Graças Andrade de Jesus, is an attorney who will provide legal advice to the 22nd Contingent of the Peacekeeping Infantry Battalion Command (BRABAT 22).

“Representing Brazil in a Peacekeeping Mission is a source of pride for any Soldier,” Lt. Col. Andrade de Jesus said. “The motto of BRABAT 22 is ‘Everything for an ideal,’ with the certainty that there will be constant challenges, but we will use our most noble efforts – such as courage, perseverance, and faith – to overcome them.”

Brazil currently has 14 women in BRABAT, four in BRAENGCOY, and one in the Marine Group, according to the Ministry of Defense.

Haitians support the Brazilian battalion


Another official, Lieutenant Paola de Carvalho Andrade, is a journalist who will work in the Social Communications Section (G10) of the 22nd Contingent of the Peacekeeping Engineering Company (BRAENGCOY). This is her second tour with the Brazilian contingent to MINUSTAH; the first was in 2007-2008, when she was a member of BRABAT 8.

“There’s an undeniable amount of motivation to participate in the Peacekeeping Operation, representing my country,” Lt. Col. Andrade de Jesus said. “Taking part in BRABAT 8 was an extremely rewarding experience, as the Brazilian battalion is respected and admired by the Haitian population and by the contingents from the other countries taking part in the mission.”

In addition to her role as legal adviser, she also took part in Civilian/Military Cooperation (CIMIC) initiatives, including distributing food and toys, and providing medical and sanitary guidance developed by the Battalion.

“The experience in Haiti exceeded my expectations. I believe that it has been one of the high points of my career as an attorney and an officer,” she said. “I had the opportunity to lead and be led, to learn and to teach, to revisit concepts and values, to exchange experiences, in short, to grow professionally and as a human being.”

What most caught her attention during the first mission was the opportunity to interact with people from different countries and cultures. “In that way, we’re able to provide the Haitian people with a better quality of life and security.”

This time, Lt. Col. Andrade de Jesus will also provide legal assistance to the battalion command -- guiding and supervising the conduct and regularity of the investigative procedures being handled by the Contingent, proposing preventive training measures for the Troops, preparing recommendations, and carrying out other missions defined by the commander of BRABAT 22.

Mission helps Haiti to walk alone


Lt. Carvalho Andrade said the peacekeeping missions increase awareness about the challenges experienced by other peoples.

“The problems of countries such as Haiti, East Timor, and Sudan are everybody’s problems. When a human being is disrespected, everyone is,” she said. “MINUSTAH and other missions provide hope to rescue dignity, autonomy, and respect. That motivates us.”

During the mission, she will provide information to the communications outlets of the Ministry of Defense and the Armed Forces. She also will serve as a link for those interested in learning more about BRAENGCOY, including news organizations, military groups, and civilians in Brazil and abroad.

“G10 serves as a Communications Department, with the most interesting task being to contribute to the maintenance of troop morale,” she said.

The main expectation is for Haiti to be able to reestablish its state structures and for its institutions to resume operations, Lt. Carvalho Andrade said.

“MINUSTAH will not solve the problems of Haitians, but it can minimize them, providing the tools and security they need to get organized and go about their business,” she said. “During these 11 years of the mission, we’ve earned the respect of the UN and the Haitian population. That strengthens Brazil’s image, and even more so, it strengthens our identity and our awareness of being able to get things done – and do good.”

Intense preparation


The training that the two women have undergone is the same as the training for the rest of the mission personnel.

“We received a variety of training. Some of it is directed to all of the Soldiers from the Contingent, and other parts are specific to each area of operation,” Lt. Carvalho Andrade said.

The first phase of the preparation is decentralized. The soldiers receive information about the mission and the specifics of Haiti, as well as marksmanship, healthcare, and human rights training. Then they carry out specific activities, such as Social Communications internships, general staff preparation internships, and courses for interpreters.

“In addition to rotating the Soldiers, these internships put them in contact with those who have already served in previous missions,” Lt. Carvalho Andrade said. “Finally, there’s a centralized preparation session: For one month, the soldiers participate in training sessions that simulate real situations. They perform tasks and are subjected to the pressures that they will encounter in Haiti.”

The 22nd Brazilian Contingent of the humanitarian mission is expected to remain in Haiti for six months, but its stay may be extended by the UN.





More than 200 female members of the Brazilian Military have served in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). Currently, 10 others are preparing to be deployed to the Caribbean country in May, when they will take part in the 22nd Brazilian Contingent of the peacekeeping mission.

One of these officials, Lieutenant Coronel Maria das Graças Andrade de Jesus, is an attorney who will provide legal advice to the 22nd Contingent of the Peacekeeping Infantry Battalion Command (BRABAT 22).

“Representing Brazil in a Peacekeeping Mission is a source of pride for any Soldier,” Lt. Col. Andrade de Jesus said. “The motto of BRABAT 22 is ‘Everything for an ideal,’ with the certainty that there will be constant challenges, but we will use our most noble efforts – such as courage, perseverance, and faith – to overcome them.”

Brazil currently has 14 women in BRABAT, four in BRAENGCOY, and one in the Marine Group, according to the Ministry of Defense.

Haitians support the Brazilian battalion


Another official, Lieutenant Paola de Carvalho Andrade, is a journalist who will work in the Social Communications Section (G10) of the 22nd Contingent of the Peacekeeping Engineering Company (BRAENGCOY). This is her second tour with the Brazilian contingent to MINUSTAH; the first was in 2007-2008, when she was a member of BRABAT 8.

“There’s an undeniable amount of motivation to participate in the Peacekeeping Operation, representing my country,” Lt. Col. Andrade de Jesus said. “Taking part in BRABAT 8 was an extremely rewarding experience, as the Brazilian battalion is respected and admired by the Haitian population and by the contingents from the other countries taking part in the mission.”

In addition to her role as legal adviser, she also took part in Civilian/Military Cooperation (CIMIC) initiatives, including distributing food and toys, and providing medical and sanitary guidance developed by the Battalion.

“The experience in Haiti exceeded my expectations. I believe that it has been one of the high points of my career as an attorney and an officer,” she said. “I had the opportunity to lead and be led, to learn and to teach, to revisit concepts and values, to exchange experiences, in short, to grow professionally and as a human being.”

What most caught her attention during the first mission was the opportunity to interact with people from different countries and cultures. “In that way, we’re able to provide the Haitian people with a better quality of life and security.”

This time, Lt. Col. Andrade de Jesus will also provide legal assistance to the battalion command -- guiding and supervising the conduct and regularity of the investigative procedures being handled by the Contingent, proposing preventive training measures for the Troops, preparing recommendations, and carrying out other missions defined by the commander of BRABAT 22.

Mission helps Haiti to walk alone


Lt. Carvalho Andrade said the peacekeeping missions increase awareness about the challenges experienced by other peoples.

“The problems of countries such as Haiti, East Timor, and Sudan are everybody’s problems. When a human being is disrespected, everyone is,” she said. “MINUSTAH and other missions provide hope to rescue dignity, autonomy, and respect. That motivates us.”

During the mission, she will provide information to the communications outlets of the Ministry of Defense and the Armed Forces. She also will serve as a link for those interested in learning more about BRAENGCOY, including news organizations, military groups, and civilians in Brazil and abroad.

“G10 serves as a Communications Department, with the most interesting task being to contribute to the maintenance of troop morale,” she said.

The main expectation is for Haiti to be able to reestablish its state structures and for its institutions to resume operations, Lt. Carvalho Andrade said.

“MINUSTAH will not solve the problems of Haitians, but it can minimize them, providing the tools and security they need to get organized and go about their business,” she said. “During these 11 years of the mission, we’ve earned the respect of the UN and the Haitian population. That strengthens Brazil’s image, and even more so, it strengthens our identity and our awareness of being able to get things done – and do good.”

Intense preparation


The training that the two women have undergone is the same as the training for the rest of the mission personnel.

“We received a variety of training. Some of it is directed to all of the Soldiers from the Contingent, and other parts are specific to each area of operation,” Lt. Carvalho Andrade said.

The first phase of the preparation is decentralized. The soldiers receive information about the mission and the specifics of Haiti, as well as marksmanship, healthcare, and human rights training. Then they carry out specific activities, such as Social Communications internships, general staff preparation internships, and courses for interpreters.

“In addition to rotating the Soldiers, these internships put them in contact with those who have already served in previous missions,” Lt. Carvalho Andrade said. “Finally, there’s a centralized preparation session: For one month, the soldiers participate in training sessions that simulate real situations. They perform tasks and are subjected to the pressures that they will encounter in Haiti.”

The 22nd Brazilian Contingent of the humanitarian mission is expected to remain in Haiti for six months, but its stay may be extended by the UN.


It's good to know that Brazil is certainly a country that is respected and admired everywhere; however, most of our politicians are an embarassment to Brazil because of so much corruption. We have to put an end to these corrupt officials, who are a great embarrassment to our nation. Also, they did not need to take their clothes off and make scandals in public as feminists of FEMEN to prove the strength of women. Congratulations! In Brazil, there are thousands of important women in the Federal, State and Civil police forces who demonstrate their strength through work and expertise, not by showing off their breasts. We need to take care of our country's needs first. Congratulations to the Lieutenants who represent our beloved Brazil so well. Make sure you visit my website www.clubedoscompositores.com.br to print the poem for International Women's Day to give away to your friends. Before the poems, there are songs with lyrics of my own. I think you will like the songs and get quite a laugh out of my humorous poetry. I am a reservist. I am 78 years old. Our Armed Forces are beautiful, and our national anthem is undoubtedly the most beautiful in the world. God be with you. This honorable Army that deeply honors its servicemembers and people shall never oppress its own people. Jungle! ('Selva', or 'Jungle' in English, is an expression used by Brazilian Army soldiers in the Amazon). It seems to me that this mission to pacify Haiti is an international staging to cover up much more important problems like the escalating Bolivarian network (Venezuela, Bolivia, Paraguay) that openly exports drug trafficking and heavy arms to Brazil before going to the rest of the world. What Haiti urgently needs is a social and food program. After all, it's a neighbor of the U.S and Cuba. Wouldn't the Salvation Army be more relevant for such tourist missions? Women will always stand out in any environment, it’s very important to take them into account and history has told us so many times… let’s give them a vote of confidence…. Our Brazilian women have the potential do many things, even the impossible because they are trained to do any kind of task. Moreover, Brazil is an intelligent nation. Congratulations. It makes me happy.
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