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Bill Anchors reflects on the life of Leni Riefenstahl


The vilification of Leni Riefenstahl (2)

I WAS saddened to hear of the death of Leni Riefenstahl. She was a talented, exuberant and vivacious woman who for fifty-eight years fought off the attacks of the Chosen Ones and their liberal lackeys who would never for a moment let her forget her past association with the Third Reich.

We'll never know whether she made her films out of national pride or for the friendship of Adolf Hitler - maybe she wasn't certain herself - but she paid a terrible price for making what had to be the most famous and important propaganda films ever created. Although she spent half a century disavowing any affection for the Nazis, she surely must be recognized as the last of Hitler's "inner circle".

While I always admired the feisty Riefenstahl, I nevertheless must confess to being less than pleased with her mimicking Albert Speer in distancing herself from her former comrades-in-arms. Yet I understood why she was forced to do so. Even after years of claiming no attachment to Nazi Germany she was still vilified by those who would use her as a scapegoat for every transgression of the Third Reich.

Also - and I'm being charitable here - Leni was known to "stretch" the truth quite often. As much as I liked her, I never would have staked my life on anything she had to say. Her remembrances had to be taken with more than a few grains of salt.

But I'll not speak ill of the dead and will leave it at that. Leni was a classy lady right up to the end and I'll not forget her. In her honor I'll dust off my DVD of Triumph of the Will [see below] and watch it again over a glass of wine and make a toast to the unforgettable Leni Riefenstahl.

Bill Anchors


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