BY JESSE WASHINGTON, AP NATIONAL WRITER The passing of Nelson Mandela leaves a waning number of global figures representing freedom and resilience against oppression -- and a changing world that makes it harder for anyone to approach Mandela's iconic…

Nelson Mandela, seen here in 1990 embracing a young girl from Soweto, inspired South Africans and the world with his message of peace. He was also a shrewd politician who knew how to fight the necessary battles. Photo by Alexander…

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