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Faust's Gold (updated edition)
Inside the East German Doping Machine
For nearly twenty-five years, East Germany's corrupt sports organization dominated international athletics. While the German Democratic Republic's secret "State Plan" was in effect, more than ten thousand unsuspecting young athletes-- some as young as twelve years old-- were given massive doses of performance-enhancing drugs. These athletes achieved miraculous success in international competitions, including the Olympics, but for many of them, their physical and emotional health was permanently damaged.This new revised edition of Faust's Gold draws on the revelations of criminal trials of GDR coaches, doctors and officials who have now confessed to ruthless medical experiments. This new edition highlights recent cases of performance enhancing drugs used in baseball, the BALCO scandal and international cycling.
Faust's Gold draws on the revelations of the ongoing trials of former GDR coaches, doctors, and sports officials who have now confessed to conducting ruthless medical experiments on young and talented athletes selected for Olympic training camps. It also draws on the extensive research of Brigitte Berendonk, who escaped from East Germany to begin a decade-long crusade to bring justice to her fellow athletes, and that of her husband, Professor Werner Franke. Berendonk's story, and those of her colleagues in the GDR, offers a unique insight into a bizarre regime.
Faust's Gold is a true-life detective story that plunges into the dark, secretive world of the GDR doping scam, where elite competitors and their families are up against a formidable opponent: the East German secret police, known as the STASI. What emerges is a complex tapestry of the politicized modern Olympics that culminates in a powerful testimony to the massive wrong done by one Eastern Bloc nation to its world-class athletes.
Praise for Faust's Gold
"In 'Faust's Gold,' the first book in English to fully convey the systematic doping of athletes in the former East Germany, Ungerleider makes a provocative comparison to the gruesome human experimentation of the Holocaust. The book is a disturbing reminder of the willingness of science to pervert itself to satisfy politics and sport."
- Jere Longman
The New York Times
"You may grow faint...but I urge you to endure, to take it all in...for then you will cry out NEVER AGAIN, NEVER AGAIN!"
- Kenny Moore, Correspondent
"The truth is that what happened in East Germany is a gross exaggeration of what happens in countless gyms across America. Athletes are downing the drugs as if their bodies were bulletproof. They ought to read this book."
San Francisco Chronicle
"Ungerleider's absorbing work is the first detailed look in English at the doping that allowed a country of 16 million to join the United States and Soviet Union as sports superpowers."
- Philip Hersh
"In a new book about the East German sports establishment, 'Faust's Gold', Ungerleider recounts the moment in 1998 when a former GDR athlete testified in Berlin at the trial of her former coaches and doctors. She pointed at the two defendants and shouted, 'They destroyed my body and my mind!'"
- Malcolm Gladwell
The New Yorker Magazine
"The book details the revelations of the legal proceedings against former German Democratic Republic (GDR) coaches, doctors and sports officials who confessed to conducting 'ruthless and destructive medical experiments' on young Olympic-caliber athletes at training camps."
- Lisa Dillman
Los Angeles Times
Concern and interest about the Touretski case is not limited to Australia. Dr. Steven Ungerleider, an American psychologist and author, just has completed a book to be released next month, "Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine." The book details the revelations of the legal proceedings against former German Democratic Republic (GDR) coaches, doctors and sports officials who confessed to conducting "ruthless and destructive medical experiments" on young Olympic caliber athletes at training camps. "It looks rather suspicious," Ungerleider said of the Australian case. "We don't know for sure. These are allegations. At first blush, it looks very suspicious that he's the coach of these very prominent swimmers. It's very unfortunate. It does cast a very dark cloud over the program. It would be very disturbing if it turns out some of the kids were actually using [drugs] and bypassing the drug tests or somehow masking them . . ."
- Lisa Dillman
Los Angeles Times
April 22, 2001
The Berlin courtroom still had the fenced enclosure used during the trials of Nazi war criminals, which seemed appropriate to the psychologist. Here, again, were men and women who claimed they were only following orders when they abused their countrymen, who argued that if they hadn't performed the experiments someone else would have, who refused to accept responsibility for the physical and emotional destruction they had caused. Eugene psychologist Steven Ungerleider, versed in the best and worst of human nature, watched in fascination. Before him was what happened when a small, totalitarian government tried to flex its muscles literally by dominating the international sports arena. He sat among women who had been the best and brightest of East Germany's athletes track stars and swimmers who brought glory to their country two and three decades earlier. But now the women knew that the glory was false. They understood why their bodies had changed freakishly. Why some were victims of cancers and other unusual illnesses. Why so many of their children were born with deformities. The women had been guinea pigs for a systematic program of doping to improve athletic performance, a program known as State Planning Theme 14.25 that was begun in the 1950s to enhance East Germany's athletic prestige in the world.
- Abby Haight
University of Texas graduate Dr. Steven Ungerleider, a sports psychologist and Olympics expert, predicted the Salt Lake City Games will have their share of doping revelations despite a new drug testing regimen. "We still have pockets of doping around the world," said Ungerleider, who recently visited Austin to promote his new book, Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine. "This will bear out in Salt Lake, as well. I don't think much has changed. The testing is more sophisticated, but for every talented scientist, there are athletes who know as much about the pharmacology as the experts." Though security matters have eclipsed all else in the buildup to these Winter Games, Ungerleider said the drug issue continues to erode the Olympics' image. "There's cynicism," he said. "The International Olympic Committee has never acknowledged the German doping situation. They need to step forward and acknowledge that it happened, and apologize." Ungerleider's book explores the German Democratic Republic's secret plan that systematically fed performance enhancing drugs to more than 10,000 young athletes for almost 40 years. Ungerleider is not without experience. When he was competing in gymnastics for UT, Ungerleider used to campaign for his sport's status by knocking heads with a Longhorns icon. "I used to fight with Darrell Royal," Ungerleider said.
- Cathy Harasta
Dallas Morning News
The ruling yesterday raised the question of what results might be changed in the future, and even whether it might be proper to adjust results from the past. For example, the decision brought renewed calls for the Olympic committee to consider awarding gold medals, or at least an apology, to American swimmers who lost to East German athletes who were taking drugs. The state sponsored system of drug use has been well documented in trials since the fall of the Berlin Wall, but the Olympic committee has so far refused to issue duplicate gold medals to American swimmers, saying it was impossible to rewrite history. But that is exactly what Rogge did yesterday. "I admire Jacques Rogge stepping up and setting a new threshold for ethical behavior," said Steven Ungerleider, a psychologist and author of "Faust's Gold," a book about the East German doping machine. "But I'm a little outraged. The I.O.C. needs to look very hard at other cases, like the American swimmers." With its quick action, the Olympic committee separated itself from the regime of Juan Antonio Samaranch, who stepped down as president last July.
- Jere Longman
New York Times
Much of the same thinking is echoed by Rene Wenzel and Angus Fraser, the coach and masseur, respectively, of the 1990 US junior cycling team, who are charged by Strock and Kaiter of facilitating the use of banned substances on the young cyclists. In a chilling comparison, Steven Ungerleider, a psychologist hired by Strock's lawyers and the author of a book on the abuses of drugs in the German Democratic Republic, "Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine", compares what happened to Strock and Kaiter to what was done to young athletes in the GDR. "Young athletes are typically vulnerable and very susceptible to the 'power and authority' of their coach/mentor," says Ungerleider."Often coaches will promise winning outcomes if they only follow very specific training techniques, behavior patterns, and dietary strategies.
- Suddendeutch Zeitung, German press
"Ewald bridged the gap from the Nazi era, and he brought with him an unfortunate wealth of information about pharmaceuticals and an attitude of winning at all costs, winning that had to do with the international political stage," Steven Ungerleider, author of "Faust's Gold" (St. Martin's Press, 2001), which detailed the East German doping system, said yesterday. While many suspected that East German athletes were cheating, the International Olympic Committee looked the other way. Upon becoming president of the I.O.C. in 1980, Juan Antonio Samaranch grew primarily concerned with unifying an Olympic movement driven by American and Soviet boycotts, not with halting drug use. In 1985, Mr. Samaranch presented Mr. Ewald with the Olympic Order, the highest honor in international sports, in an effort to prevent East Germany from boycotting the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul, South Korea. This would later prove to be one of Mr. Samaranch's most embarrassing moments. Every medal won by East Germany has now been tainted by the specter of drug use, but the I.O.C. has declined to revoke any of the medals, saying that history cannot be rewritten.
- New York Times Obituary on Manfred Ewald; head official of GDR doping
October 23, 2002
The IOC has consistently declined to rewrite history to award Babashoff, for instance, the gold medals she would have won if the East Germans had not been cheating. In the aftermath of the judging scandal at the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City, which resulted in duplicate golds being awarded to the Canadian and Russian pairs skaters, some have called for a renewed look at the results from Games dominated by East Germany. Steven Ungerleider, a sports psychologist whose 2001 book "Faust's Gold" recounts the German doping trials, suggested Wednesday that the IOC need not "rewrite history and give Shirley, for instance, her medals." "But what [the IOC] does need to do is apologize apologize to all the American ladies and all the others who got beaten up here," he said.
- Obituary of Manfred Ewald
Los Angeles Times
October 22, 2002
"One hopes his death marks the end of an era of state sponsored and implemented doping of athletes, many of whom were not in position to understand what was being done to them," said Richard Pound, chairman of the World Anti Doping Agency. Mr. Ewald was sentenced to 22 months in jail July 18, 2000, but given probation because of his poor health. "He was an outrageous character," said Steven Ungerleider, whose book, "Faust's Gold," details the German doping trials. "Even in the very end, he refused to apologize or even acknowledge this took place."
- Phil Hersh, Obituary of Manfred Ewald
October 25, 2002
Despite estimates that as many as 10,000 East German athletes were given steroids and other dangerous drugs by the coaches and officials who constructed the country's powerful Olympic teams of the 1970s and '80s, only 179 filed claims for medical bill assistance by Monday's deadline. "It's an outrage and it's despicable how the Germans have hurled insult on top of insult at these athletes," said Steven Ungerleider, the research psychologist who wrote "Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine." In addition to a $10,000 ceiling on claims, the panel that instituted the victims' compensation fund intimidated many of the former East German athletes by linking conditions to the claims. One, the athlete had to produce verification by an independent doctor that the drug use caused the respective condition. Two, the conditions were subject to disclosure in the media.
- Lance Pugmire
Los Angeles Times
April 1, 2003
Sports federations such as USA Track & Field are no longer the lead players
in doping cases involving U.S. athletes. The newly formed U.S. Anti Doping Agency took over that role after the Sydney Olympics; during the Games, the IOC oversees doping protocols. WADA has been working for several months on a process called "harmonization" making anti doping rules consistent from nation to nation. "Now we need harmonization for ethical conduct," said Steven Ungerleider, an Oregon research psychologist who wrote the book, "Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine." "The United States has not been very forthcoming in that department," he said, adding that he "absolutely" supports the call for an investigation into Jerome Young's test and appeal.
- Alan Abrahamson
Los Angeles Times
"If all this turns out to be true," Dick Pound, head of the Montreal based World Anti Doping Agency, said, "it's even more clear than ever that USATF is totally out of control." He added, "There's a major credibility gap here. I don't want to make it sound like the United States is the only [nation] doping. It's not. But this capacity for double think and denial is becoming a joke." Steven Ungerleider, an Oregon researcher who wrote a highly acclaimed book about the state sponsored East German doping program of a generation ago, said he recalled interviewing those involved with the East German system, and having them insist that the U.S. sports scene also had "doping docs and very smart chemists and it would just be a matter of time when the truth came out. Now they get to laugh at us," he said.
- Los Angeles Times
Steven Ungerleider, a research psychologist who wrote the book ``Faust's Gold'' about the East German doping program, said others eagerly accept those offers. ``There are labs all over the world where athletes can call a 1 800 number and say, `Can you run a urine test for me because I've got a competition this weekend and I need to know if I'll pass it,' '' Ungerleider said. ``They're very sophisticated and this is their business, 24/7.'' Ungerleider recalled that when he was writing his book about the East German program, many of the doctors involved warned him that America wasn't so innocent, either. ``They always said, `Someday soon, there will be skeletons dropping out of your closet,' '' Ungerleider said. `` `You will find a lot of your doctors and coaches have been doping for years.' I've been thinking about that a lot in the last week.''
- Mark Eammons
San Jose Mercury News
"If we really wanted to go after it, we'd have undercover sting operations aimed at our elite athletes," one researcher noted. "And that ain't going to happen." Still, the anti doping community was cheered by what it regards as the biggest breakthrough since Canada's Ben Johnson was stripped of his 100 meter gold medal at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul. "The noose is tightening," says Dick Pound, the Canadian attorney who heads the World Anti Doping Agency. "We're getting to the point where you can run, but you can't hide." Steven Ungerleider, author of "Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine," hopes that by warning athletes about these newer, more sophisticated tests, this scandal will produce "a sea change" or, at the very least, a start at cleaning up athletics. True sports fans can only hope it's not a false start.
- Mark Starr, senior correspondent
"What we have uncovered appears to be intentional doping of the worst sort," USADA Chief Executive Officer Terry Madden said last month. "This is a conspiracy involving chemists, coaches and certain athletes using what they developed to be 'undetectable' designer steroids." At the very least, THG "is right up there on the creativity scale," said Steven Ungerleider, an author who wrote about the state sponsored East German doping program of a generation ago. Catlin said he doesn't know whether the steroid was designed to disintegrate in testing or whether that was simply a coincidence. Either way, after making his identification, he had more work to do.
- Los Angeles Times
Sport physician, Bob Goldman, asked 198 Olympic level U.S. athletes whether they would be willing to take a banned substance if they were guaranteed to win and not get caught; 195 said yes. More than half said they would take the drug if it would enable them to win every competition for five years but then kill them. If that sounds farfetched, Steven Ungerleider, an Oregon sports psychologist who has consulted with U.S. Olympic athletes, said other studies have found similar results. ``There is a mentality among competitive athletes that they will do anything to win,'' he said.
- San Jose Mercury News
''I think Balco is the tip of the iceberg,'' said Steven Ungerleider, a sports psychologist in Eugene, Ore., and author of ''Faust's Gold,'' which depicted the state sponsored doping system in the former East Germany. ''I think there are probably a dozen labs working with athletes and chemists to figure out designer drugs and not get caught.'' Ungerleider, the sports psychologist from Oregon, said: ''We're caught up in a culture of aggression and entertainment and 'whatever it takes to get it done.' I'm concerned about the message we are sending to our children that, in order to play well, you have to be juiced up.''
- New York Times feature on drug testing
November 17, 2003
As described in the book "Faust's Gold," (St. Martin's Press, 2001) written by an American psychologist, Dr. Steven Ungerleider, Andreas (Krieger) had a dramatic encounter with the presiding judge. First, Andreas presented a wrinkled photograph of himself as Heidi. Then he said of the East German officials, "They just used me like a machine."He described hating his body, and spoke of a mind "crazy with panic," filled with thoughts of suicide. He told of the sex change procedure, and in a moment of brutal poignancy, said of his mother, "She says no matter who I am, boy or girl, she will always love me."Ewald and Hoppner were both convicted of accessory to the intentional bodily harm of athletes and were given probation. Upon testifying, Andreas said he lost his fear of the two men. And he got some confirmation of his beliefs from the verdicts. "The words used in court were that the giving of relatively high doses of Oral Turinabol to a girl around puberty has significantly contributed to development into transsexuality,"said Dr. Werner Franke, the molecular biologist whose research into the East German doping system formed the basis of the criminal prosecutions. Although the complex decision to have a sex change could not precisely be connected to steroids, the psychologist Ungerleider said, "Emotional fallout from high levels of testosterone can make people unsure who they are."
- Jere Longman, Olympic Correspondent
New York Times feature on steroids and Andreas Krieger
“Marion Jones has served as an ambassador for her sport with her graciousness, intelligence and outstanding achievement, said Dr. Steven Ungerleider, a psychologist who has worked with a number of Olympic athletes and who wrote the book "Faust's Gold" about East Germany's doping program. "I think she's a very decent person," Ungerleider said. "Having said that, I'm a bit saddened because she's made some very bad decisions. We all have to be real careful who we associate with. We are entering a new threshold of integrity, where it is no longer sufficient for an athlete to sign a disclosure form saying that he or she is drug free. Athletes at the elite level have to take complete responsibility for their behavior."
New York Times feature on Marion Jones
Feb 4, 2004
The IMG model incorporates the mental development, video work and principles espoused by tennis teacher Nick Bollettieri, the impetus behind the sprawling IMG campus here who has cultivated teenage tennis sensations such as Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Monica Seles and Anna Kournikova. Steven Ungerleider, a psychologist who has worked with U.S. Olympic athletes for more than 20 years in the Eugene, Ore., area, studied Bollettieri's work with Sampras when he was young in which he used a camera fixed on certain body parts to reveal how he reacted to a bad shot or blown point. Bollettieri could point out a particular muscle that remained tightened, indicating the youngster had not really gotten over the mistake, then revealed how much more poorly Sampras played when in that condition. "I think it really is a terrific approach," Ungerleider said. "I was down there four or five years ago and I went through some of the same exercises myself [while playing tennis] and it was very educational, because you are getting visual feedback, but usually the mental coach will also ask you to do some breathing and check in on how intense you are with verbal or feedback as well."
- Jason La Canfora
February 12, 2004
"We are a culture that loves winning: we love hard hitting NFL players, fast sprinters, record shattering swimmers.We've bought into the notion of winning at all costs," notes Steven Ungerleider, a research psychologist in Eugene, Ore., and author of "Faust's Gold: Inside the East German Doping Machine. Athletes certainly feel the pressure to win. Even though excessive steroid use can damage the liver and has been linked with pancreatic cancer and heart disease, athletes are still willing to risk their health for an edge. A study several years ago in North Carolina asked athletes if they would take a substance that would guarantee them a gold medal, but also shorten their lifespan by several years. Half of those surveyed said they would. "For two to three decades, we've had pockets of coaches, trainers and even doctors supplying drugs to elite athletes in the U.S.," Ungerleider says. "We have labs today where coaches and trainers can [get quick access] to the drugs they want. BALCO is definitely the tip of the iceberg."
- Forbes Magazine
Conspicuous by their absence in the indictment were the high profile athletes who since October have testified before the grand jury at the San Francisco federal building ranging from Barry Bonds to track stars Marion Jones and Tim Montgomery to Raiders linebacker Bill Romanowski. Athletes were given limited immunity for their testimony. But authorities could prosecute them if there are indications they committed perjury. Steven Ungerleider, an Oregon sports psychologist who has consulted with U.S. Olympians, said athletes linked to the case should not be breathing a sigh of relief. "There's a lot of athletes who are pretty nervous right now because Conte's Rolodex has a lot of names on it,''Ungerleider said. "The word of the hour is `stay tuned,' because there's more to come.''
- San Jose Mercury News
"Until now, when there is a positive test, they go after the athlete," said Steven Ungerleider, whose book "Faust's Gold" chronicled the state sponsored doping of East German athletes a generation ago."Now there is a very strong message going out we're also going to look very carefully at coaches and doctors and trainers, the family around the athlete."Though no athletes were named Thursday, and at least some of those who testified before the grand jury were granted limited immunity, Ashcroft did not rule out legal action against anyone.
- Alan Abrahamson
Los Angeles Times