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While marking the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, on Friday’s NBC Today show, former Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw sat down for an fawning interview with former East German Olympic skater Katarina Witt, whom he labeled “the beautiful face of socialism.” Rather than celebrate the collapse of authoritarian Communism in Europe, Brokaw sympathized with Witt over how “hard” it must have been on her athletic career.
The report seemed to start out with the right tone, as Brokaw proclaimed: “Thirty years ago tomorrow, the rarest of revolutions, a peaceful one, rearranged the entire world order. The ugliest symbol of the Cold War, one that had defied protests and presidents....proved no match for a people determined to be free.”
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However, things took a turn when he announced: “Today, in a unified Germany, people are still coming to terms with what was learned and what was lost that night.” Examining what was supposedly “lost,” he told viewers: “One who knows better than most, Katarina Witt, two-time Olympic figure skating gold medalist and the biggest star East Germany ever produced. She was famously called the most beautiful face of socialism.”
Witt said of her time representing East Germany at the Olympics: “It was a kind of duty to do well because I knew my country paid for my sport. So I felt obligated to give back the right performance and to give back my gold medals...”
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Brokaw then lamented: “...when the wall fell a year later, being that beautiful face of socialism became something of a liability.”
Wow, imagine that, being a Communist hero wasn’t popular anymore after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
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Commiserating with Witt, Brokaw observed: “You’d become famous, celebrated, not just in your own country, but around the world, as an East German, now it’s gone. Was that hard?” Witt admitted:...
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