Boycotts Olympiad

Boycotts Olympiad

In January 1980, US President Jimmy Carter called for a boycott of the Moscow Olympics in response to the introduction of Soviet troops in Afghanistan; 64 countries supported his position. And this is not the first time when Olympiads have been a field for the expression of political orientations.

Paris, 1924

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Germany and its allies in the First World War, including Soviet Russia, which was declared a political boycott in the West, were not invited to the 1920 Olympiad held in Antwerp, Belgium.

Four years later, the Soviet Union refused to go to the Olympics, although an official invitation came to the Supreme Council for Physical Culture under the CEC of the RSFSR from France. There were two reasons for such a gesture. First, the USSR thus supported Germany, which was still not called to the Olympics, remembering the First World War. Secondly, the statute of the Red Sport International, in which the Soviet Union was a member, obliged its members to fight bourgeois sports organizations, and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) was the first on this list. The USSR boycotted the Olympic competitions, holding proletarian Olympics instead of them, until 1952.

Berlin 1936

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The prospect of the XI Summer Olympics in Nazi Germany was not very pleased with the countries that were planning to take part in them. At the conference in defense of Olympic ideas, which was held in Paris in June 1936, all "people of goodwill and friends of Olympic ideas" called for a boycott of the games in the Third Reich. Instead, it was proposed to hold the People's Olympiad in Barcelona. To achieve this was the Council to fight for the transfer of the Olympics from Berlin. At the same time, the IOC sent to Berlin experts who did not notice anything in the capital of Nazi Germany that contradicted the Olympic principles.

As a result, on July 19, the Games were solemnly opened by Hitler, and the National Olympiad in Barcelona did not work out in parallel - in the same month the Francoes revolted against the Republican government of Spain.

Athletes had to compete under the flags with the swastika that hung Berlin. The Swiss Paul Marten, who was married to a Jewish woman, was expelled from the list of participants.

The Nazis carefully studied the American and European teams for the purity of the Aryan blood, ahead of time thinking about the generation of "children of the Olympiad."Despite this, the triumph of the racist ideology did not come out of the games - ten African Americans took six gold, three silver and two bronze medals, and black sprinter Jesse Owens was named the best athlete of the Olympics.

It was only after the Second World War that the IOC publicly admitted that its decision not to change the venue for the 1936 Olympics was mistaken.

Melbourne 1956

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Among the countries that boycotted the 1956 Summer Olympics (held in November-December), three groups stand out. For the first — Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, and Cambodia — the demarche was a reaction to the Suez crisis and the aggression of France, Britain, and Israel in relation to Egypt.

The second - Spain, Switzerland and the Netherlands - did not go to the Games in protest against the suppression by the Soviet troops of the uprising in Hungary a month earlier. Hungarian athletes themselves, unhappy with the new pro-Soviet government, refused to perform under the flag of the Hungarian People’s Republic and appeared at the Olympics under the flag of Hungary of the 1918 model. Some of them after the end of the competition did not return to their homeland.

A separate reason for a boycott of the Olympics was also in the People’s Republic of China, which protested against inviting the Taiwan team as an independent state.

Tokyo, 1964

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In an invitation to the capital of Japan in 1964, South Africa was denied the policy of apartheid pursued by the country's leadership and a life sentence on the future first black president Nelson Mandela. South Africa was able to return to the sports community only in 1992.

Meanwhile, its drama developed in Asia: in 1962, the IV Asian Games were held in Jakarta, for which the teams of Israel and Taiwan were not allowed (they were denied visas). The IOC deprived the Indonesian Olympic Committee of authority in connection with racial discrimination in that country, and in retaliation announced that it would hold its own games for developing countries (Games for the New Emerging Forces, GANEFO). In 1963, 50 states participated in the first competitions. Then the IOC banned GANEFO participants from performing at the Olympics. Therefore, Indonesia decided to boycott the Games, and the DPRK supported it.

Montreal 1976

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The Olympic Games in Montreal boycotted 26 African countries that failed to ban the participation in the games for New Zealand, which took part in rugby competitions in South Africa despite sanctions imposed against this country. The IOC was justified by the fact that rugby is not part of the Olympic program. Iraq and Guyana joined the protest of African countries.

The team of Taiwan did not go to Montreal because Canada did not want to recognize the independence of the island. In 1975, Canada threatened to prevent the Taiwanese athletes from entering the Olympics, who intended to fly the flag of a partially recognized Republic of China, despite the fact that the IOC recognized its National Olympic Committee. According to one version, Canada made this decision under pressure from Beijing, because China was the country's largest trading partner.

The IOC threatened to ban the Olympics in Montreal, then Canada offered Taiwan to use its flag and anthem, but refused to recognize the Republic of China as an independent state, so the Taiwan delegation did not go to Montreal. China, in turn, did not take part in the Games in protest against the fact that the IOC recognized Taiwan as an independent state.

Moscow, 1980

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Following the United States, all NATO member countries and some allies of the United States and Great Britain opposed the entry of Soviet troops into Afghanistan. In addition to 64 states that officially declared their intention to boycott the Olympics, another 16 limited themselves to not recommending their athletes to take part in it.

The national teams of Australia, Holland, Italy, France, Great Britain and some other countries performed not under the national flags, but under the flag of the IOC. In the event of their victory, the national anthem did not sound national, but the Olympic anthem.

Los Angeles 1984

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At the next Olympics, the socialist countries accused the United States of “swelling up anti-Soviet hysteria” and almost completely disarmed Los Angeles. The only exceptions were Yugoslavia and China, which for the first time took part in the Olympics. Romanian athletes performed at the Games in private.

“With the direct connivance of the American authorities, various kinds of extremist organizations and groups have sharply intensified, openly aiming at creating“ unbearable conditions ”for the stay of the USSR delegation, speeches of Soviet athletes. Political demonstrations hostile to the USSR are being prepared; undisguised threats of physical violence are heard against the NOC of the USSR, Soviet athletes and officials. The leaders of anti-Soviet, anti-socialist organizations are representatives of the US administration, their activities are widely advertised by the media.To justify this campaign, the United States authorities and the organizers of the Olympiad make constant references to various kinds of legislative acts, ”read a statement issued on May 8, 1984 by the National Olympic Committee of the USSR.

In addition to the countries of the victorious socialism, the Games boycotted Libya and Iran, dissatisfied with the participation of Israel in them.

Seoul, 1988

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This time, the initiator of the boycott was North Korea, which wanted to hold part of the competition on its territory, but did not receive the approval of the IOC. Then the DPRK completely refused to participate in the Games, in which it was supported by Cuba, Nicaragua and Ethiopia. Teams of Albania, Seychelles and Madagascar did not come to Seoul, however, these countries did not announce an official boycott. The socialist states did not support North Korea, since the USSR did not dare to miss two Olympiads in a row.

Sochi, 2014

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For the first time the idea to boycott the Olympics arose in 2008 during the Russian-Georgian war. The world community was called for by the President of Georgia, Mikhail Saakashvili. At the same time, American newspapers called for a US-European boycott of the Winter Olympics.

Last summer, when many people forgot about the conflict on 08.08.08, the world community reacted painfully to the adoption by the State Duma of a law banning the propaganda of homosexuality.One of the first to boycott the Olympics in Sochi called for a British actor, writer, playwright and discoveries gay Stephen Fry. “In the general interest of the humanity proclaimed by the Olympic movement, the IOC is obliged to say firmly to the barbaric, fascist law adopted by the Duma at the suggestion of Putin,” Fry wrote in his blog. He compared the actions of the Russian authorities towards gays with the discriminatory policies of the Third Reich regarding Jews and expressed fears that non-traditional athletes could be in danger in Russia. Fry's position was shared by his compatriot, actor Rupert Everett.

British Prime Minister David Cameron, US President Barack Obama, German President Joachim Gauck, French President Francois Hollande, Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, and European Commissioner for Justice Vivian Reding have already announced their refusal to visit Sochi. At the same time, not all of them speak directly about the political reasons for their decision.

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