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The Federative Republic of Brazil is a Portugese speaking country in South America with Brasilia as its capital. Other major cities are Belem, Fortaleza, Manaus, Belo Horizonte, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, and Curitiba. Brazil is almost the size of the U.S. and is rich in natural resources; however there are major disparities in the distribution of wealth. Brazil has a small (10%) middle class.

Following three centuries under the rule of Portugal, Brazil became an independent nation in 1822. By far the largest and most populous country in South America, Brazil has overcome more than half a century of military intervention in the governance of the country to pursue industrial and agricultural growth and development of the interior. Exploiting vast natural resources and a large labor pool, Brazil became Latin America's leading economic power by the 1970s. Highly unequal income distribution remains a pressing problem.

Brazil's Iguacu Falls, in the words of Eleanor Roosevelt, "makes Niagara Falls look like a leaky faucet".

From the CIA World Factbook 2000. Not Wikified.

Also, Brazil. The title of a film directed by Terry Gilliam.

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