The appointment of Sabino Vaca Narvaja as ambassador to China can be read in terms of a palatial internal and should also serve to understand what method will Alberto Fernández use when defining future changes in the National Cabinet.
Louis Kreckler falls in Beijing because he did not know how to interpret the political codes of the President and the peculiar way of Felipe Solá to formally handle the Chancellery. Alberto Fernández has no personal resentment with the career ambassador who will soon return to Buenos Aires. Instead, Solá always thought that Kreckler moved his pieces to reach the 13th floor of the San Martín Palace.
Vaca Narvaja spent his childhood in exile in Havana and plays power as José Capablanca, a Cuban chess player who reduced his opponents with rapid and unexpected movements. With a degree in Political Science and an expert in China, Vaca Narvaja was not an ambassador in Beijing before because Alberto Fernández thought he was “too young” for that diplomatic position.
I used to hear Vaca Narvaja and never sterilized the policy of Gossip that wore down the figure of the career ambassador who held key positions in Brazil, Germany and Switzerland.
Kreckler was accused of seeking a new apartment in Beijing, having organized an expensive family move from Bern to China, some softness in dealing with the communist nomenclature and leave for an island with duty free when the vaccine was being negotiated with the businessmen assigned by Xi Jinping.
This internal information from Palacio San Martín reached Olivos nonstop. And the Chancellor smirked when asked about it. Not a prayer for Kreckler.
Alberto Fernández did not need Solá’s opinions to verify that Kreckler did not fit his political needs in China. He never liked that it took so long to get from Switzerland to Beijing, and in turn he discovered that Vaca Narvaja was cunning, diligent, quiet, and very effective.
“I don’t know what thread he has in Beijing, or who he talks to. But he knows how machinery works, and every time I asked him something, he solved it ”, the head of state opined on Vaca Narvaja when it was already public that Kreckler had been displaced from the embassy in China.
Vaca Narvaja was key to getting Xi Jinping to renew a swap of 8,500 million dollars that is deposited in the Central Bank and had been tied to the two credits stand-by signed by Mauricio Macri with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
And before that geopolitical move swiftly executed by Beijing, the future ambassador to China had achieved that Alberto Fernández and Xi will exchange personal letters through the diplomatic bag. This epistolary rapprochement between the Casa Rosada and Zhongnanhai was a diplomatic success for Vaca Narvaja.
Vaca Narvaja’s last move happened last week when there was still no memorandum of understanding between Argentina and the Sinopharm company. The memorandum with Sinopharm for 30 million doses of Chinese vaccines was pushed by Kreckler and signed by Minister Ginés González García, but Vaca Narvaja accelerated the contacts and brought the parties together.
That diplomatic move by Vaca Narvaja was a direct instruction from Alberto Fernández.
There is no doubt about the proximity of the future ambassador to China with Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. There are family ties and political affinities, but Alberto Fernández rescues his knowledge of the communist nomenclature and his predisposition to act quickly and with short-term institutional results.
In this sense, the President leverages on a basic concept of Deng Xiaoping: “White cat or black cat, it doesn’t matter; the important thing is that it catches mice “, said the leader of Chinese currency.
Alberto Fernández assumes the membership of Vaca Narvaja, But he has already understood that he has few officials in key positions that function in the midst of the pandemic and the internal one in the Palace.
In this sense, the head of state designs a new Cabinet with ministers who meet three basic premises:
1. Loyalty outside of the internal belongings in the ruling coalition
2. Political resistance before the friction of a management with little success that is heading towards an electoral year
3. Results according to the requirements of Balcarce 50
“Cristina is Cristina”, Alberto Fernández repeats tautological and with double meaning when asked how his personal and political relationship with the vice president is. This implies that there will be new distances and upcoming reconciliations. before the differences of concept that both have regarding the exercise of power in Balcarce 50.
The President will not sacrifice any minister or secretary who belongs to his hard core and will require the three conditions of your Cabinet change method –loyalty, resilience and results– When the names of the candidates or the resignation claims arrive via Instituto Patria or suggested by its political ally Sergio Massa.
CFK has a long bill that Alberto Fernández will not allow. And the President has already decided the removal of a minister, evaluates two others barely productive, and plans to settle accounts with a vice Minister that I charge against his own troop. All carried out with respect for the balance of power in the ruling coalition.
When it is published in the Official Gazette that Kreckler was displaced from the embassy in China, Alberto Fernández will send Vaca Narvaja’s statement -article 5- to the Chamber of Senators. And weeks later the change of Cabinet will be announced. Before autumn comes to Argentina.
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