Half of Brazilians in Fear of War Over the Amazon

© Ivan Mlinaric

As more and more places in the developed world join those already heavily reliant on non-domestic resources, it's no wonder that folks in some developing nations might be worried about the future -- and in Brazil, they are. According to the results of a new poll, half of all Brazilians surveyed are either certain, or strongly believe that within the next 20 years an attack will be waged on their homeland for control of the resource-rich Amazon rainforest. But who would do such a thing? Well, 37 percent say the United States is a likely aggressor.

The survey, conducted by the Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA), found that out of the 3,796 Brazilians questioned, there are underlying concerns about the state of their nation's resources. All told, 50 percent of respondents were seriously concerned about attacks pertaining to the Amazon; 45 percent believed that access to Brazil's pre-salt resources could lead to an attack.

When asked which nation they feared was most likely to attack, 37 percent said the United States. Meanwhile, only 32 percent perceived the United States as an ally.

"People still find themselves threatened with countries which have unmatched military capabilities. At the same time, U.S. companies export, make investments and the possibility of partnership is very high. This ambiguity stems from the variety and versatility of U.S. power," researcher Rodrigo Fracalossi tells G1 Globo News.

To many Americans, this skepticism felt by Brazilians in regards to U.S. foreign policy in Latin American may come as a surprise. But it wouldn't be the first time charges that the U.S. might use force to acquire resources has been leveled. The notion that the U.S. military in recent Middle East conflicts was driven by oil persists to this day, both domestically and abroad.

With the world becoming an ever more crowded place, where the finite resources are already being stretched thin in places, it seems entirely possible that future international conflicts will be spurred not by the traditional triggers, but by a lack of water, arable farmland, or fossil fuels. And if that is indeed the case, Brazil, with its abundance of natural resources, could very well find itself on the front line on day.

Tags: Amazonia | Brazil