China: Olympics Will Not be Politicised

Saturday, 19th May 2007 at 6:18 UTC 1 comment

The Chinese are managing some wonderful double-speak I think. They’re claiming that attempts to create a boycott of the 2008 games, on the basis of Chinese arms sales to Sudan, will politicise the games. Sudan has just been accused by the UN of killing over 100 Dafur refugees, while China continues to buy oil from the regime.  The fact is, these games are already the most political since 1936 and the whole Olympic project has long been a political one anyway.

China’s comments are not surprising. They want it to appear that these games are on course to be a shining success. If they are successful, this will send a clear message, and a very political one at that, that China is now capable of great things. Hosting the games was always going to be a PR exercise, and so it is hypocritical to claim that this attempt to bring in politics is something new and dangerous.

One of the problems I have with the Olympics is that it basically allows lots of room for inter-state politics, and none for the people of this world to actually voice their concerns. While America and Russia created a war-front on the Gymnastics floor, and Hitler used the games to spread his message of racism, those who want to stand up for any kind of human-level justice are usually pushed to the sidelines.

In fact, when a city takes on hosting the Olympics, it must sign a sort of contract with the IOC, of which one clause is that there will be no protests within the city in which it takes place during the entire period of the games. This means that regular, unrelated protests, must take a 2 week hiatus or be faced with mass arrests. Its likely that SOCPA will be used for this purpose in the case of the 2012 games.

Anyhow, it turns out that the Sudanese government can send athletes to represent itself, and the Chinese can even host the event, in order to bring a sense of good international citizenship upon their country, but that it is impossible for a group of people representing the people of Darfur to use the event to their ends.

The so-called Olympic Dream is supposedly based on peace. This is not the peacefulness which the Olympics claims to support, it is the peace which allows states to get away with genocide, safe in the knowledge that no group of citizens will challenge their actions, and that other states are too complicit, too reserved, to even pass comment.

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Entry filed under: China, Freedom, Human Rights, News, Olympics, Peace, Politics, Sudan.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Greg  |  Saturday, 19th May 2007 at 11:54 UTC

    Do you know of anything going on with Free Tibet and the games?

    Reply

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