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"I am just like Stalin," Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said. Today's Mexican daily La Razon featured the shockingly proud comparison to the Soviet dictator, which the Venezuelan president made during a visit to the Caracas Book Fair on Thursday.

"And here they have a copy of Stalin: History and Critique of a Black Legend," Maduro said in front of reporters. "Stalin is like me. The moustache is exactly the same. Comrade Stalin who beat Hitler."

The latest controversy for Hugo Chavez's successor comes amid increasing crackdowns against opposition leaders in Venezuela. Washington has responded by calling the regime in Caracas a threat to U.S. national security. Some in Latin America have criticized the Obama administration for the new hard line.

Maduro's remarks about Joseph Stalin, whom history largely regards as a mass murderer of his own people as well as an active imperialist internationally, are sure to offer more fodder for those both at home and abroad looking to put more pressure on Caracas.

About the Source: La Razon is a tabloid-format daily published in Mexico City, and directed by Rubén Cortés Fernández.

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Geopolitics

Ingrid Betancourt, A Hostage Heroine Reinvented As Feminist For President

Although Betancourt is best known for surviving six years as a hostage of the Colombian terror group FARC, and is considered a centrist politician, her unlikely new campaign for president will be centered on gender issues.

Betancourt in Bogota announcing her candidacy Tuesday

Chepa Beltran/LongVisual via ZUMA
Felipe García Altamar

-Analysis-

BOGOTA — Exactly 20 years after she was kidnapped by the FARC terror group in the middle of her campaign for Colombian president, Íngrid Betancourt is launching a new campaign to lead her nation. She will do so on behalf of her party, Verde Oxígeno, becoming the only female candidate from the Centro Esperanza Coalition (CCE), which for months received a barrage of criticism for grouping only male candidacies and traditional politicians.

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