Mired in deepening political and economic crises, more than 250,000 Brazilians took the streets in a wave of national protest. What will the world find when they turn to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics?
When Rio de Janeiro bid for the chance to host the 2016 Games, everything about Brazil sparkled: Its economy was booming, its middle class had grown by the size of California’s in less than a decade, and vast oil discovery off Rio’s coast promised a lasting prosperity. Rio’s proposal was Brazil’s proposal, and boasted the nation was “well-positioned as a result of its long-term growth, supported by proven economic policies.”
The nation’s high spirits were contagious; the International Olympic Committee went for Rio, and Brazilians took the vote as a sign of global confidence in the country’s future.