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Brazil-U.S. relations

The World Cup offers something of a free kick for soccer diplomacy, which some observers say U.S. President Barack Obama is failing to capitalize on.

This week in Brazil, local media revealed that the Agência Brasileira de Inteligência (Brazilian Intelligence Agency—ABIN) has spied on diplomatic allies including the United States—an embarrassing revelation for Rousseff, who in recent months has positioned herself as a champion of privacy rights and even canceled an official state visit this fall to the White House because she said the U.S. refused to swiftly end its spying program.

Brazil’s postponement of its White House state dinner–seen as a long-awaited wedding ceremony for the two countries after a very drawn out courtship–may signal more than just President Rousseff’s anger with revelation that the U.S. National Security Agency  (NSA) had been spying on her personal life and Petrobrás, the state oil company.

On September 17, Rousseff canceled her October 23 visit, a decision forced by two months of drip-drip revelations in local media O Globo that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has been monitoring millions of phone calls and emails sent by citizens across Brazil.