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President Obama praises Dutch speed skaters with Rembrandt backdrop

Barack Obama

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a statement in front of Dutch master Rembrandt’s The Night Watch painting during a visit to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Monday, March 24, 2014. Obama will attend the two-day Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Frank Augstein

President Barack Obama stood in front of the most impressive backdrop he said he’d ever seen for a statement to the press and went on to laud one of the most impressive performances in Olympic history on Monday.

“I’d be remiss if I did not mention that I’m proud of both of our teams at the Olympics,” Obama said at The Rijksmuseum for art and history in Amsterdam (transcript here). “So in addition to painting, you really know how to speed skate.”

Obama was standing in front of Rembrandt‘s 17th-century masterpiece “The Night Watch.”

In Sochi, Dutch speed skaters won 23 of a possible 32 medals, or 71.9 percent, the greatest-ever percentage for one nation in one sport that had at least eight medal events at a single Winter Olympics, according to

The entire U.S. Olympic Team won 28 medals in Sochi, nine fewer than Vancouver 2010 and three more than Torino 2006.

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