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TikTok video showing communist leader enjoying gold-flecked steak disappears after public outrage

Image Source: Sky News YouTube video screenshot

A top leader in the Communist Party of Vietnam faced the ire of his people after he was captured on a TikTok video enjoying a gold-flecked steak at a trendy chef's restaurant.

General To Lam can be seen in the video leaning in to bite the steak as its being fed to him by the celebrity chef Nusret Gokce, known online as "Salt Bae." Afterwards the general gives the thumbs up sign of approval.

Lam went to the high class London restaurant after making a pilgrimage to visit the grave of Karl Marx, the philosopher who is credited for creating communism.

The video elicited anger from the Vietnamese public who saw it as blatant hypocrisy on the part of the communist leader.

The New York Times reported that the TikTok video was immediately taken down, but also that the hashtag #SaltBae was blocked on Facebook, raising questions about whether the company had complied with a possible request from the communist party to censor the story.

The Times said Facebook had unblocked the hashtag and was investigating why it had been blocked.

"It paints a sharp contrast about the disparity in living standards in Vietnamese society," said political commentator Chinh Duong, an architect in Hanoi.

"Especially during the recent epidemic, when the budget is exhausted and the working people are struggling for survival," he added, "such a lavish party of officials is offensive."

Political dissident blogger Pham Minh Vu said the incident was just the tip of a very large iceberg.

"Everyone knows that Vietnamese officials are very corrupt," said Vu, "so when they see such an incident, they use it as an opportunity to express their anger."

The steak appeared to be the 24-karat tomahawk steak, which costs about $1,150. Sky News reported that the cost of the gold-flecked steak equaled about the same as the average yearly wage of a Vietnamese citizen.

Here's more about the revealing incident:

'Communist' Vietnamese minister eats gold encrusted steak

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