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Reporter Caught Smearing Herself with Mud to Make It Look Like She Helped with Disaster Cleanup

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A reporter working for a major German media company apologized Friday after she was captured on camera smearing herself in mud so that it would appear as if she was aiding locals with cleaning up their neighborhoods in the aftermath of major floods that rocked the country.

“I made a serious mistake on Monday,” Susanna Ohlen said in a statement shared by RTL, her now-former employer.

She said that after she had been helping people in the region privately on previous days, she felt “ashamed” standing in front of a camera while others were helping clean up the area that day.

“Then, without thinking about it, I smeared mud on my clothes,” Ohlen said.

She said that as a “journalist” and a “person who cares about the suffering of all concerned,” she should have not done what she did.

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Videos grabbed by an onlooker appeared to show Ohlen bending down to cover herself in mud, her back turned toward the camera and her crew.

They were at the site where she had been reporting for the news segment “Guten Morgen Deutschland,” which translates to “Good Morning Germany.”

In the segment, she was telling viewers about the cleanup efforts being conducted in areas affected by the devastating floods that hit Germany recently, claiming at least 173 lives and leaving multiple people missing, according to CNN.

RTL published an article with the headline, “Cleaning up after the flood: RTL presenter Susanna Ohlen lends a hand in Bad Münstereifel.”

After news of what she was really doing got around, the outlet removed the piece.

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RTL removed Ohlen from her job at the company, the media group confirmed in a statement to the press, according to The Independent.

“Our reporter’s approach clearly contradicts journalistic principles and our own standards. We, therefore, gave her a leave of absence on Monday after we heard about it,” the outlet said, according to Canadian outlet National Post. RTL confirmed Ohlen was later fired.

Ohlen was working for the network’s “Good Evening RTL” and “Good Morning Germany” programs, the National Post reported.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel described the damage caused by floods in the country as “surreal” when she visited a state affected by the disaster.

“I can almost say that the German language doesn’t have words for the devastation,” she said, according to CNN.

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Andrew Jose is a journalist covering business and finance, foreign policy and the aviation industry, among other beats.
Andrew Jose is a journalist covering business and finance, foreign policy and the aviation industry, among other beats. Besides The Western Journal, he regularly contributes to the Daily Caller and Airways Magazine, and has bylines in Lone Conservative and International Policy Digest. Speak to Andrew securely via ajoseofficial@protonmail.com
Education
Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
Foreign Policy, Economics, Aviation, Business And Finance




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