Final Word from Thursday, October 23, 2003

Yevgeny Primakov, a former Russian foreign minister and premier, had a nickname for Madeleine Albright: the Lady of Steel. During her recent five-day visit to the CR, Czechs saw mainly the soft side of her. In interview after interview, Albright endeared herself to the public with her childlike but fluent Czech, her self-confident but not overbearing demeanor, and her anecdotes. When asked how difficult it was for her to rise from humble beginnings as an emigrant from Czechoslovakia at age 11 to become the highest-ranking woman ever in U.S. politics, she said it helped that she married into money. Czechs are hungry for heroes of substance who haven't been tainted by local politics or business. Regardless of what they might think of Albright's politics, she is one of the few super-successful compatriots that Czechs can admire and be proud of.


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