U.S. Tennis Association accidentally played the Nazi-era German national anthem at Fed Cup

Source: Shutterstock
Source: Shutterstock

Before the start of a replay match in the Fed Cup women's tournament in Maui, Hawaii, on Saturday, the U.S. Tennis Association played the Nazi-era version of the German national anthem — an oversight that immediately drew criticism from the German team, Reuters reported.

CNN reported that the USTA released a statement apologizing for the performance, but not before German tennis star Andrea Petkovic told reporters the song choice was "the epitome of ignorance." Reuters noted that Petkovic added: "I've never felt more disrespected in my whole life, let alone in Fed Cup." 

Her team coach, Barbara Ritter, was also deeply mortified, calling the mistake "an absolute scandal, a disrespectful incident and inexcusable," according to Reuters.

The German national anthem "Das Deutschlandlied," written in 1841 and adopted as the national anthem in 1922, typically doesn't include the first stanza, "Deutschland, Deutschland über alles, über alles in der Welt" (Germany, Germany, above all else, above all else in the world), due to its nationalist theme and strong ties to Nazi Germany. The BBC reported that the first verse was dropped after World War II and instead, performances of the song begin with the third verse, "Unity and justice and freedom."

The U.S.T.A. released a statement apologizing for the error and has been tweeting apologies to outraged fans, stating it takes "full responsibility for this incident" and that "steps have been taken to make sure this doesn't happen again."

CNN reported that during former opera singer Will Kimble's performance of "Das Deutschlandlied," both the crowd and the German team can be seen singing different lyrics from Kimble, with members of the audience and the German team singing loud enough to be heard over video of the performance.

Reuters reported that Petkovic had considered walking off the court before her match against U.S. player Alison Riske, which Petkovic ultimately lost.

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Talia Jane

Talia Jane is probably a human and definitely a writer covering trending and breaking news. Find her on Twitter at @itsa_talia

MORE FROM

Will Justice Anthony Kennedy retire at end of Supreme Court term? Here's what we know.

Rumors that the 80-year-old swing justice may leave the bench are fueling fear of a second Trump pick on the nation's high court.

3 states and D.C. allow same flammable building materials behind Grenfell Tower fire

The causes of London's Grenfell Tower are similar to the justifications used to waive fire regulations in the U.S.

New Jersey bill would require kids to be taught how to interact with police

Students from kindergarten through 12th grade would receive the education.

UK Parliament hit with cyberattack

Members of Parliament had difficulty accessing their emails Saturday in the wake of the attack.

Istanbul LGBT pride march banned by government for safety concerns

A right-wing nationalist group has vowed to stop the protest.

Compounds seized by US in December reportedly contained material useful in Russia probe

The Trump administration has reportedly been considering returning the New York and Maryland compounds to Russia.

Will Justice Anthony Kennedy retire at end of Supreme Court term? Here's what we know.

Rumors that the 80-year-old swing justice may leave the bench are fueling fear of a second Trump pick on the nation's high court.

3 states and D.C. allow same flammable building materials behind Grenfell Tower fire

The causes of London's Grenfell Tower are similar to the justifications used to waive fire regulations in the U.S.

New Jersey bill would require kids to be taught how to interact with police

Students from kindergarten through 12th grade would receive the education.

UK Parliament hit with cyberattack

Members of Parliament had difficulty accessing their emails Saturday in the wake of the attack.

Istanbul LGBT pride march banned by government for safety concerns

A right-wing nationalist group has vowed to stop the protest.

Compounds seized by US in December reportedly contained material useful in Russia probe

The Trump administration has reportedly been considering returning the New York and Maryland compounds to Russia.