Discover more from Andrew Korybko's Newsletter
Why Didn’t Lavrov & His Brazilian Counterpart Discuss Lula’s G20-Like Peace Proposal?
There’s no point in Russia entertaining Lula’s doomed-to-fail G20-like proposal and thus wasting either top diplomat’s valuable time that could otherwise be better invested in strengthening their strategic partnership.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Brazilian counterpart Mauro Viera had a telephone conversation on Tuesday. Here’s the full text of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s press release:
“On February 2, Foreign Minister Lavrov had a telephone conversation with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federative Republic of Brazil Mauro Vieira.
Sergey Lavrov wished Mr Vieira success in connection with the start of his tenure as head of the Brazilian Foreign Ministry.
The parties confirmed mutual commitment to continuing joint work to strengthen the entire range of strategic partnership between Russia and Brazil.
The ministers also discussed current issues of interaction in the bilateral format and in the international arena, and reviewed the schedule of upcoming Russian-Brazilian contacts at various levels.”
And here’s what the Brazilian Foreign Ministry’s official Twitter account reported:
“Minister Mauro Vieira spoke on the phone today with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Sergey Lavrov, who took the opportunity to renew his congratulations on the inauguration of President Lula. The Ministers agreed to hold a meeting in the near future.”
Popularly known as Lula, he’s one of BRICS’ co-founders and thus regarded as one of the most influential voices in International Relations amidst the global systemic transition to multipolarity. Accordingly, his most passionate supporters praised his G20-like peace proposal as supposedly heralding a potential breakthrough in this nearly year-long Russian-NATO proxy war. The reality, however, is that Russia already indirectly signaled its lack of interest in this idea shortly before their Foreign Ministers’ call.
“A Former Donbass Diplomat Threw Cold Water On Lula’s G20-Like Peace Proposal” by questioning the other parties that the Brazilian leader’s proposal implied would participate in this process and then concluded that he probably just shared this unrealistic solution to give himself extra international clout. This assessment aligns with prior arguments that Lula is no longer the “multipolar revolutionary” that he was previously considered to be during his earlier two terms after having since recalibrated his vision.
In hindsight, that former Donbass/Russian diplomat’s critical reaction to his proposal that was amplified by one of Russia’s publicly financed international media flagships just prior to their Foreign Ministers’ call indirectly conveyed Moscow’s lack of interest in Lula’s G20-like idea. If the Kremlin truly appreciated his suggestion, then it therefore naturally follows that Lavrov would have discussed it with his Brazilian counterpart, but neither side officially made any mention of that having happened.
Instead, they focused on bilateral relations, which was pragmatic considering that it’s within this domain that they stand to actually make the most tangible progress. There’s no point in Russia entertaining Lula’s doomed-to-fail G20-like proposal and thus wasting either top diplomat’s valuable time that could otherwise be better invested in strengthening their strategic partnership. This explains why the idea was totally ignored during their talks.
That said, this observation doesn’t imply that Russia was offended by Lula’s politically self-interested suggestion. It knows why he said what he did as indirectly conveyed via the former diplomat whose critical reaction was amplified by one of its publicly financed international media flagships before their call and seems content to let Lula continue generating international clout instead of spoiling his plans. After all, it would be against the spirit of their strategic partnership for it to publicly criticize him.
The takeaway is that Lula’s most passionate supporters who praised his G20-like peace proposal as supposedly heralding a potential breakthrough in the nearly year-long Russian-NATO proxy war were wrong. They miscalculated Russia’s reaction and also didn’t understand Lula’s politically self-interested reasons in suggesting this. Hopefully they’ll learn from their analytical errors and eventually produce more accurate assessments of his foreign policy in the future.