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Fact Check: America Inspired the Insurrection in Brazil

Claim:

Several U.S. media outlets have suggested the recent insurrection in Brazil was inspired by the events of January 6, 2021.

Who said it:

Politico, CNN, and the New York Times. CNN anchor Jim Sciutto, who is back on the air after a mysterious leave of absence to address a “personal situation,” wondered if “election denialism” had become a “new U.S. export.” This was “not a wild question to ask,” wrote CNN reporter Oliver Darcy in an article headlined, “Déjà coup: How election lies sparked the violent attack on Brazil’s government.”

Note: As catchy as it sounds, the CNN headline is dangerously misleading. Experts agree that describing the January 6 uprising (and the insurrection in Brazil) as failed coups is not correct. They were failed autogolpes.

Why it matters:

Mainstream journalists are obsessed with January 6 and profoundly ignorant of events that happened before Barack Obama wore a tan suit to the White House briefing room in August 2014.

Context:

There were actually quite a few political uprisings that took place prior to the storming of the U.S. Capitol in 2021. The following is a non-exhaustive list of insurrections throughout human history (AD) that laid the groundwork for January 6:

• Judas Uprising (Judea, 6)

• Mutiny of the legions (Germania, 14)

• Gaulish debtors’ revolt (Gaul, 21)

• Yellow Turban Rebellion (China, 184-205)

• Lady Triệu’s uprising (Vietnam, 248)

• War of the Eight Princes (China, 291-306)

• Uprising of the Five Barbarians (China, 304-316)

• Saxon Wars (Saxony, 772-804)

• Thomas the Slav’s Rebellion (Byzantine Empire, 821-823)

• First Rebellion of Bardas Phokas the Younger (Byzantine Empire, 969-970)

• Second Rebellion of Bardas Phokas the Younger (Byzantine Empire, 987-989)

• Hōgen Rebellion (Japan, 1156)

• The First Prussian Uprising (Pomerania, 1242-1249)

• First Scottish War of Independence (Scotland, 1296-1328)

• Battle of the Golden Spurs (Flanders, 1302)

• St. George’s Night Uprising (Estonia, 1343-1345)

• Transylvania peasants’ revolt (Hungary, 1437)

• Skanderbeg’s rebellion (Albania, 1444-1468)

• Rebellion of the Alpujarras (Spain, 1499-1501)

• The First Revolt of the Brotherhoods (Spain, 1519-1523)

• The Santo Domingo Slave Revolt (Dominican Republic, 1521-1522)

• The Bayano Wars (Panama, 1548-1582)

• The Prayer Book Rebellion (England, 1549)

• The Chichimeca War (Mexico, 1550-1590)

• Gaspar Yanga’s Revolt (Mexico, 1570-1618)

• The Croquant Rebellion (France, 1594-1595)

• The Cudgel War (Finland, 1596)

• The Bolotnikov Rebellion (Russia, 1606-1607)

• The Khmelnytsky uprising (Poland, 1648)

• The Moscow Salt Riot (Russia, 1648)

• Revolt of the papier timbré (France, 1675)

• Bacon’s Rebellion (Virginia, 1676)

• Beckman Revolt (Brazil, 1684)

• Guerra dos Emboabas (Brazil, 1707-1709)

• Guerra dos Mascates (Brazil, 1710-1711)

• Vila Rica Revolt (Brazil, 1720)

• The Lunenburg Rebellion (Canada, 1753)

• Tacky’s Revolt (Jamaica, 1760)

• Whiskey Rebellion (Pennsylvania, 1791)

• Haitian Revolution (Haiti, 1791-1804)

• Curaçao Slave Revolt (Curaçao, 1795)

• Boca de Nigua Revolt (Dominican Republic, 1796)

• The Aponte Conspiracy (Cuba, 1812)

• Brazilian War of Independence (Brazil, 1822-1825)

• The War of the Maidens (France, 1829-1832)

• The Bathurst Rebellion (Australia, 1830)

• The Malê revolt (Brazil, 1835)

• The Ragamuffin War (Brazil, 1835-1845)

• The Sabinada revolt (Brazil, 1837-1838)

• The Balaiada revolt (Brazil, 1838-1841)

• The Caste War of Yucatán (Mexico, 1847)

• The Beach Rebellion (Brazil, 1848-1849)

• The Small Knife Society Rebellion (China, 1853-1855)

• The Red River Rebellion (Canada, 1869-1870)

• The Revolution of the Lances (Uruguay, 1870-1872)

• The War of Canudos (Brazil, 1895-1896)

• The Dog Tax War (New Zealand, 1898)

• The Macedonian Struggle (Ottoman Empire, 1904-1908)

• The Contestado War (Brazil, 1912-1916)

• The Easter Rising (Ireland, 1916)

• The Green Corn Rebellion (Oklahoma, 1917)

• The Wilhelmshaven Mutiny (Germany, 1918)

• The Christmas Uprising (Montenegro, 1919)

• The Pitchfork Uprising (Russia, 1919)

• Patagonia Trágica (Argentina, 1920-1922)

• The Brazilian Revolution (Brazil, 1930)

• The Constitutionalist Revolution (Brazil, 1932)

• The Communist Uprising (Brazil, 1935)

• The Integralist Uprising (Brazil, 1938)

• The Guatemalan Revolution (Guatemala, 1944)

• The Costa Rican Civil War (Costa Rica, 1948)

• The Revolución Libertadora (Argentina, 1955-1958)

• The Cuban Revolution (Cuba 1956-1959)

• Campanha da Legalidade (Brazil, 1961)

• Brazilian coup d’etat (Brazil, 1964)

• Democratic National Convention (Chicago, 1968)

• The Black Power Revolution (Trinidad, 1970)

• The Lebanese Civil War (Lebanon, 1975-1990)

• The Egyptian Bread Riots (Egypt, 1977)

• Salvadoran Civil War (El Salvador, 1979-1992)

• Diretas Já (Brazil, 1983-1984)

• The First Intifada (Israel, 1987-1991)

• Tiananmen Square Massacre (China, 1989)

• The Log Revolution (Croatia, 1990-1995)

• Los Angeles Riots (Los Angeles, 1992)

• Zapatista Rebellion (Mexico, 1994)

• The Second Intifada (Israel, 2000-2005)

• The Kitchenware Revolution (Iceland, 2009-2011)

• Occupy Wall Street (United States, 2011-2012)

• The Vinegar Revolt (Brazil, 2013)

• Michael Brown riots (Ferguson, Mo., 2014)

• Freddie Gray riots (Baltimore, 2015)

• Women’s March (United States, 2017)

• George Floyd riots (United States, 2020)

• January 6 uprising (Washington, 2021)

• Freedom Convoy (Canada, 2022)

• Brazilian Congress uprising (Brazil, 2023)

Analysis:

Historical evidence suggests the January 6 protesters and the insurgents in Brazil are linked, but only in the sense that both represent the long-standing human tradition of lashing out and breaking stuff to express political discontent—a tradition that predates the founding of the United States by several thousand years. If anything, the American insurrectionists were inspired by the rest of the world’s propensity for political unrest.

Verdict:

4 Clintons

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