U.S. Looks to Expand Military Ties with Brazil

U.S. Looks to Expand Military Ties with Brazil

By Dialogo
April 02, 2012

U.S. Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on his way back from Brazil on March 30, said he was pleased with “wide-ranging” discussions he had with Brazilian Defense Minister Antonio Celso Amorim and Head of the Brazilian Armed Forces Joint General Staff, General Jose Carlos de Nardi.

The leaders discussed common interests – transnational organized crime, border controls, intelligence sharing, technology transfers and cyber. “I went in hoping that we wouldn’t get bogged down in a single weapons system or on technology transfer, and we didn’t,” Dempsey said.

The chairman said he was not surprised that Brazil has the same concern as the United States about cyber. “The better they do economically and the more influence they have internationally, the more they see what we see, which is [that] cyber is both our greatest opportunity and our greatest vulnerability,” he added. Gen. Dempsey also noted that cyber defense may be an area where the two military partners can work together.

“They are concerned about the Mideast, the long-term implications of the Arab Spring, whether we think Iran will respond to sanctions,” the chairman said.

They also discussed the regional picture. Brazil is at ease with the relationships it has with all its neighbors. “They see Colombia in a special light because they feel Colombia has made significant progress in containing the FARC insurgency,” Dempsey said. “That worried the Brazilians because they were afraid of spillover.”

Brazilian leaders told Dempsey they must deal with transnational organized crime.