Gustavo Petro and Javier Milei.EFE / GETTY
Argentine presidential candidate Javier Milei gave his first interview to a Colombian media outlet this week after winning the August 13 primary. True to his violent and provocative style, he expressed his ideas on RCN radio. “Basically, what is a socialist? “It’s garbage, it’s human excrement,” said the ultra-liberal economist. Colombian President Gustavo Petro responded with a short message on social network X – formerly Twitter – comparing him to the leader of Nazism: “That’s what Hitler said.” The border crossing continues and the ultras attacked the left-wing president again this Thursday : “It’s part of the decadence.”
“The real Argentine disease is socialism. “To the extent that a country embraces these ideas, it will only get poorer,” Milei said in an Aug. 29 interview on Colombian radio. In this interview with journalist Julián Parra, the ultra-liberal, candidate of the far-right party La Libertad Avanza, affirmed that socialism is a “disease of the spirit” and that socialists are “bad people”. Then he added: “What is a socialist, basically? It’s garbage, it’s human excrement ready to make everyone miserable by not wanting to put up with another human’s glamor.”
Petro, the first left-wing president of today’s Colombia, took up this sentence and reacted to the statements with three words on social networks. “That said [Adolf] Hitler,” the president wrote. He compared the ultra-liberal, who counts a rabbi among his great advisors, with the dictator who persecuted and murdered millions of Jews, gypsies, homosexuals and political dissidents in Nazi Germany. Petro, who is close to Argentine President Alberto Fernández, has not commented publicly on the election results in the southern country, where parliamentary elections are due in October and the ultra are seen as favorites against Peronist Sergio Massa, the country’s current economy minister, and conservative Patricia Bullrich .
Petro’s comments were picked up by the media of both countries, and Milei, a media brute who opposes abortion, promotes the sale of organs and the carrying of guns, suggesting dollarizing the economy and minimizing the state continued the controversy. “As a socialist, nothing surprises me,” he said this Thursday in an interview on the Argentine radio station Radio Continental. “Petro is the San Pablo Forum of the Puebla Group. That’s part of decadence. It bothers us liberals a lot because we are embarrassing them,” he replied to the journalist who asked him about the comparison.
For his part, the Colombian president did not respond to the message about buying Milei with Hitler. In the past, there have been public disputes with the Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele, particularly via social networks. He is a confrontational and avid Twitter user, often insulting opponents, rivals and even the media on these networks.