Will Operation Car Wash’s Anti-Graft Legacy Survive a Backlash in Brazil?

A supporter of former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva holds a poster that says in Portuguese “Free Lula,” Brasilia, Brazil, June 25, 2019 (AP photo by Eraldo Peres).
A supporter of former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva holds a poster that says in Portuguese “Free Lula,” Brasilia, Brazil, June 25, 2019 (AP photo by Eraldo Peres).

Operation Car Wash, or Lava Jato as it is known in Brazil, is widely regarded as the biggest corruption investigation in history. It has ensnared some of the biggest and most powerful Brazilian companies, and its investigators have brought charges against hundreds of businessmen, officials and politicians, including former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, widely known as Lula. Its proponents say that Lava Jato has been a welcome cleansing force in a graft-ridden part of the world, but its impartiality has been called into question. According to hacked messages published by the online investigative news outlet The Intercept earlier […]

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