Brazil hosts the 2014 FIFA World Cup and anarchist group Black Bloc plans to disrupt the event and festivities. The group claims it is a waste of money when there are millions in poverty in the country.
In an interview with The Times, a member of the Black Bloc anarchist group said: “Fifa lies to us, it is all money laundering. The people get nothing out of it. They’ve spent millions on stadiums and have a law saying they don’t have to disclose how much they spend. Fifa will rule this country for the time of the World Cup.”
The 26-year-old heavily-tattooed black-clad anarchist, who asked not to be identified, said: “The World Cup is absurd. It will be a focus for us and we will fight it.”
There are already plenty of security concerns in Brazil for the World Cup and Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. It has the seventh-highest homicide rate in the world and only 8% of the reported crimes are solved. The city is behind in building stadiums for the World Cup because of the crime and violence. There is also violence at soccer matches.
The most jarring headline came when an amateur soccer match turned ugly in Pio XII, Maranhão, a rural city in northern Brazil. The referee stabbed a player — who later died — when he refused to leave the field. Angry fans stormed the field, stoned the referee to death, decapitated him and placed his head on a stick. Brazilians did not dismiss the incident, but said a gruesome crime in a remote part of the country should not be seen as representative of security in the major cities.
Last week, Black Bloc came to the “aid” of protesting teachers:
Wearing black clothing, crash helmets, gas masks and scarves round their faces, they set fire to banks, sprayed anti-World Cup grafitti on the walls of damaged buildings and handed out leaflets saying: “Relax people. It’s us, the Black Bloc. What you can’t do, we can. We don’t just attack, we defend people against police abuse and defend our right to protest.”
The group claims they just want to help and protect any demonstrators. Professors and analysts say people trust Black Bloc because they view the police as the enemy since the majority of crimes remain unsolved. Rio’s homicide rate is down, but other crimes are still high.
Elaine Henriques, a Rio resident for 58 years said “the most common crimes in Rio are petty theft, armed assaults and car robberies. More violent crimes and instances of assault are not very frequent, or happen more in the periphery of the city.”
Professor Rafael Alcadipani at São Paulo, who has studied Black Bloc, said people believe the World Cup is catered to the rich and do not like it. They love soccer, but cannot afford a ticket. This could be one of many reasons why anyone would protest against the World Cup. He also thinks the group will try to stop at least one match.