I’ll Take The Hypocrisy , Also To Be Served up With A Side Order of Bull#hit .
by tophatal …….
The London Olympics are less than two weeks away and this quadrennial event brings the world’s almost 207 sovereign nations for almost a month-long series of sporting events . The spirit of competition is fostered by the IOC and the Olympic flag of unity . Granted , around the world there still remains conflicts and within our midst we still have despotic leaders holding their citizens in deplorable conditions . And nowhere at present has this been more prevalent than in the countries of Myanmar (Burma) and Syria . The two countries in question have been in the news due to their repressive regimes and lack freedom for their civilians . Inasmuch , as I hate to see a conflagration and the mix of politics and sports ! There has to be a time , when a stand must be taken . So often we are told , that sports can be used as a conduit to a meaningful exchange of ideas , which can also lead to peace . However, there are times when this does not appear to be the case .
It has been a rarity for that premise to work and the last such instance may well have been when the Rugby World Cup was held in South Africa , as then President Nelson Mandela sought bring about a coming together of the country’s minority White population and that of its majority Black , and other ethnic minorities . For far too long under the white ran governments , the fallacy of ”apartheid “ was preached as a way for that country to exist . And the repeated failures of the UN (United Nations) , US and the United Kingdom to bring about meaningful change in South Africa was not achieved until Mandela was freed from Robben Island prison , pretty much indicated that the world chose to condone the policy . Now some might say , sanctions were in place but in reality that was pretty much a joke . Embargos were broken and as long as there were millions of dollars to be made everyone turned a blind eye to the fact and the political climate in the country at the time . The 1995 Rugby World Cup was a great deal more than a triumph the South African President , as his country would pull off one of the greatest upsets history of rugby and perhaps all of sports , itself . Having uncannily progressed through the tournament as an underdog , South Africa make their way to the championship game , where they would face the highly favored New Zealand ( All Blacks) . South Africa would prevail in a nail-biting 15-12 upset , bringing the country their very first major international team competition title . The story of this triumph was celebrated in the Clint Eastwood , Oscar nominated movie “ Invictus” (2009) starring Matt Damon and Morgan Freeman .
Granted, the goals and ideals of the Olympic spirit has been to foster that verve and competitive spirit as well as seeking to bring about peaceful accord between nations . But that policy has never been strictly adhered to by the successive IOC presidents . Jacques Rogge as the incumbent IOC President has proven to be dogmatic , corrupt and anti-feminist . Furthermore , he has often made statements that have lacked compassion and a complete understanding of the world in which he resides . In response to a recent question posed to him he asked by a member of the press delegation convened at the IOC headquarters in Lausanne , Switzerland . Rogge would respond that he feels there is room for nations such as Myanmar , Syria , and Iran to remain and be part of the Olympic community and participants in the London games . When pressed on the question of the repressive regimes of the countries in question and the very fact that Syria in the past year has seen in excess of 12,000 civilian lives have been lost . As Syria’s President , Bashir al-Assad has let loose his military and death squads , as they have ceaselessly killed thousands of innocent victims , as he seeks to remain in power . Rogge was almost non-committal , but felt that it has been the dogma of the press that has very much driven the stories as they relate to the trio of countries mentioned .
Many of us can remember the Moscow Olympics’ boycott of 1980 wherein the US led 61 countries in protest of Russia’s invasion of Afghanistan . In the ensuing years the communist regime fought a war of attrition , that would in the end see the country withdraw from the Middle Eastern nation , having suffered an embarrassing defeat at the Western alliance supported Taliban and what was then a little known organization by the name of Al –Qaeda , led by a charismatic Saudi by the name of Osama Bin-Laden .
Russia would retaliate for the West’s slight , by them boycotting the 1984 Los Angeles . Olympics . That would lead to a number of repercussions with the Russian , Eastern-bloc countries raising their ire and withdrawing in protest in answer the US led withdrawal in 1980 . Ideology and politics “trumping” what was meant to be about principles . No moral high ground was won by either on either of the occasions in question because at the end of the day both super-powers were simply clueless .
While that dogma has remained the US remains powerless to deal with Syria , much this has come about from the veto-power held by China and Russia on the UN Security Council . The five- member permanent council made up of delegations from China , Russia , France , United Kingdom and the United States have simply allowed both China and Russia to dictate terms as it concerns the problems in Syria . Three hundred UN observers will not be able to monitor of the movement of Assad’s military in Syria . And the very fact that China and Russia has been able to veto any action of force or for that matter sanctions against the Arab nation shows us all how powerless and out of touch the UN just happens to be . Meanwhile, the Foreign Secretaries Jiechi Yang of China and China and Russia’s Sergei Lavrov create the perception of seeking peace while their respective countries continue unimpeded with their armaments’ sales to the Arab nation .
Here in the US , President Barack Obama , and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham-Clinton continue speak with a great deal of rhetoric and bullshit on the plight of Syria , while calling for Bashar al-Assad to step down . If al-Assad’s father , Hafez al-Assad , who led the country until his death , could be so venal and act with such monstrous cruelty during his reign of terror . Then what would give either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton , the impression that Hafez’s son would willingly step down as the dictator of Syria ? Is there no fu#king common sense to be found from anyone within this current US administration or are each of the members so damn anally retentive ?
While the mockery and pretense goes on even with Kofi Annan’s insistence that a peaceful resolution can be worked out to bring about a cease-fire . The atrocities still continue in Syria , with the cities of Homs , Aleppo , Damascus , and Hamah , continue to be strafed with hostilities from Syrian military and their adjunct security forces . Three hundred UN observers can in no way manage to oversee a population of almost 32 million people but this has been the idiocy of the UN and the support given to it continuously by the UK and US , as that body tries to negotiate a cease-fire .
It seems remarkable in this day and age , athletes and specifically those in North America would seek to stand idly by , rather than being vocal on a number social issues . If it can take individuals such as Jim Brown , Jackie Robinson , Arthur Ashe , Bill Russell , Bill Walton , Muhammad Ali , Tommie Smith and John Carlos to speak out about social injustices not just here in the United States but as they have witnessed it on the global stage . Then why is it , that we now see nothing more than an apoplexy of non-responsiveness from today’s athletes on a mountain of social issues and injustice ? In the lead-up to these games the voices of such stars as , Serena Williams , Venus Williams , Tyson Gay , Kobe Bryant and LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony , remain mooted and silent . But I guess when the likes of LeBron , Kobe and the man many in whose footsteps they willingly followed , Michael Jordan are resolute only be known for the prowess on the court , rather than also trying to be socially responsible . Each remained ever so silent while basking in millions that they continue to make on an annual basis . It looks as if not only can money bring power and corruption but it can also buy a great deal of silence , for those who choose to remain out of the fray . That is certainly what can be evidenced here amongst many of today’s most prominent athletes . Selling $200-00 and $450-00 sneakers that bears your name , while proclaiming your wealth , does little for your image if you still come off looking like a clown .
The cloud under which these games are about to be held are murky , as while many of us are looking forward with a heightened sense of expectation as to the perceived tally of medals that will be won by Michael Phelps , Ryan Lochte , Serena Williams , Usain Bolt , Yohan Blake , Rafael Nadal , Roger Federer , Novak Djokovic , Maria Sharapova and Andy Murray . As each of the athletes in question will seek to serve their country proudly , while at the same time add greatest single individual mantel in all of sports , the title of being called an Olympic champion. .
Picture gallery for your perusal .
At some point in the future the IOC Executive Committee will have to take a stance , as to how it views nations as their ongoing moral conduct , rather than seek to “window dress” each act of heinous atrocity . If it is not bad enough itself acts as a secretive organization , without transparency and a great deal of corruption within their midst . IOC President Jacques Rogge believes himself above the fray in these allegations but with each passing moment he seems to place himself into an even deeper abyss despair and ridicule . In reality , who can really look at this once hallowed institution as a bastion sporting excellence and celebration , when it has become so corrupt and misguided ? What thoughts if any do you have with regard to the points raised within this article ? Simply leave a comment as you see fit .
Picture and slide show details below .
(1) LOCOG chair Seb Coe (second from right) and Rio Tinto chairman Jan du Plessis as (second from left) pose with the medals as official metal supplier for the Olympic Games Rio Tinto hands over Olympic and Paralympic medals to LOCOG for secure storage in the vaults at the Tower of London on July 2, 2012 in London, England. Getty Images Europe / Andy Redington ….
(2) The official symbol for the 2012 Olympic games starting on 25th July 2012 .AFP /Reuters /Carl Logan …
(3) British Prime Minister David Cameron greets Jacques Rogge, President of the IOC at Downing Street on March 28, 2012 in London, England. They are holding meetings to discuss the progress of the preparations for the London 2012 Olympics and its legacy. Getty Images Europe / Matthew Lloyd …..
(4) The city of Homs , in Syria , is under siege by the country’s military under orders by President Bashir al-Assad . The assault has led to death of at least 2,500 victims in the country’s second largest city in a country of 32 million people . AP /Reuters / Hassim Mohammed …
(5) Former UN Secretary-General . Kofi Annan (left) , is seen here with Syrian President Bashir al-Assad in the nation’s capitol of Damascus at the Presidential palace where the two discussed a cease-fire . To date with each truce , it has been broken with the government forces claiming they were simply acting in defense against terrorist forces , seen as the position by the UN . courtesy of AP Photo ….
(6) Former South African President Nelson Mandela is seen here with South African (Springbok) rugby captain Francois Pienaar after the team’s 15-12 victory over New Zealand in the 1995 Rugby World Cup in Capetown , South Africa . The surprising victory by the Springboks over the highly favored All Blacks led to unison with the country , which had seen a great deal of violence under the apartheid regimes of previous all-white led governments within South Africa . Jo’burg (Johannesburg) Times / Joseph Mathebele` …
(7) Nation’s top Negro athletes gather to hear Muhammad Ali (formerly Cassius Clay) give his reasons for rejecting the draft, United States, June 4, 1967. Photographer unknown, courtesy of Schomburg Center, Art and Artifacts Division. Front row: Bill Russell, Muhammad Ali, Jim Brown, and Kareem Abdul Jabbar (formerly Lew Alcindor). Back row: Carl Stokes, Walter Beach, Bobby Mitchell, Sid Williams, Curtis McClinton, Willie Davis, Jim Shorter, and John Wooten. The four prominent athletes were outspoken advocates against social injustice not just within the US during the civil rights’ era but also against social injustices around the globe. Today , it this sort of advocacy that is rarely seen amongst many this generation’s most high-profiled athletes . courtesy of alumniroundup.com @ all rights reserved copyrighted material ……… Definition of Bill Russell .
(8) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon , left , is seen here with US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at a meeting of UN Security Council of which the US one of five permanent members of that specific council . It has been the intransigence shown by China and Russia and their veto power that has hindered any real progress in finding a successful resolution to the atrocities now taking place in Syria . Courtesy of Newsweek International …
(9) United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon (L) shakes hands with United States President Barack Obama in the Oval Office at the White House February 28, 2011 in Washington, DC. According to the White House, Ban and Obama met to “discuss the humanitarian, diplomatic, legal and other actions needed to put a stop to violence against civilians and to ensure that U.N. agencies and U.N. members mobilize to provide humanitarian assistance to Libya’s people.” Not on the topic of discussion were the atrocities already taking place in Syria . That should come as no big surprise , as US foreign policy and diplomacy over the last three decades has been about as consistent as a listless ship , amidst in the Atlantic Ocean . Getty Images North America / Chip Smodevilla …..
(10) Center , Tommie Smith (gold medalist) , right, John Carlos (bronze) and left , silver medalist , Australian Peter Norman . Carlos and Smith would be stripped of their medals won at the 200m Men’s Finals and sent home for their militant “Black Power” salute . Today both Tommy Smith and John Carlos are celebrated for the position taken at the games in Sydney , Australia of 1968 . Courtesy of Reuters/archives …..
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The delectable Ashley Logan .