mandag 21. februar 2022

How will the Beijing Games be remembered?

The Olympic flame has been extinguished. So what does the afterglow look like. As a sporting event, it has been spectacular. However, when it is remembered in the years to come, this is what will most likely be talked about: a US-born athlete competing for China; a Russian teenager allowed to compete despite testing positive for a banned substance; a virally popular mascot; and a debilitating virus.

From the outset there was controversy. The Chinese government constantly says that the Olympics should not be about politics, but then chose a war hero from the deadly border clashes with Indian soldiers to carry the Olympic torch. Major Western nations led a diplomatic boycott of the Games, after mounting allegations of widespread human rights abuses in China, especially in the country's far west, where hundreds of thousands of ethnic Uyghurs have reportedly been detained in re-education camps.