Monday, April 7, 2008

If China Cannot host Olympics, Nobody Can!

Protests over China's crackdown on Tibet forced organizers to put the Olympic torch on a bus to protect it from demonstrators shortly after it set off from the Eiffel Tower in Paris today. This happens after a large number of protestors tried to put off the flame and succeeded three times, embarrassing the Olympic committee, embarrassing Beijing and most importantly embarrassing the spirit of the Olympic torch itself.

If the protestors are using the Olympics to draw the attention of the world towards the atrocities and human rights violation executed by China in Tibet, so be it. However, it is important that they do so without destroying the traditional spirit for which Olympics stands for.

If on the other hand, the protestors want to proclaim that China cannot host the Olympics because they are perpetuators of human rights violation, then I would like to kindly remind the protestors that "Human Rights" is such a largely contextual issue, that in one form or the other most countries in the world perpetuate it in some degree or the other. I would like to point out that by that argument if China cannot host the Olympics, nobody (probably) can!!


I wish to present just for representation a glance into the Human Rights Violation cases perpetuated in the host nations of the Olympics in the past 30 years.

2004 Olympics, Athens Greece
Human rights nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) have repeatedly alleged that illegal immigrants and refugees are subjected to violence by border guards and coast guard officers when caught entering Greece illegally. Police beat up civilians in Pyrgos, Peloponnese during a routine identity check. The local police director ordered an inquiry; however, no results had been released by year's end.

2000 Olympics, Sydney Australia
Since 1990 the UNHRC has heard almost fifty complaints against Australia. Many Australians find it embarrassing or outrageous that a foreign tribunal can sit in judgment of Australia. Read the summaries at http://www.nswccl.org.au/issues/hr_violations.php

1996 Olympics, Atlanta Georgia USA
Remember Iraq, and the Weapons of Mass Destruction? Remember Afghanistan? Remeber Veitnam? Well, here is a list of violation of Human Rights by USA. http://www.twnside.org.sg/title/1893-cn.htm

1992 Olympics, Barcelona Spain
Societal Abuses and Discrimination in Spain have become commonplace. Muslims continue to experience some societal prejudice. The Spanish Federation of Islamic Religious Entities (FEERI) and the Union of Islamic Communities in Spain (UCIDE) criticized what they called an increase in Islamophobia. Read more at http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2006/78840.htm.

1988 Olympics, Seoul South Korea
Violence against women is a problem in South Korea. In a single year 3,914 cases of rape are reported. Many cases go unheard of.
http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2003/27776.htm.

1984 Olympics Los Angeles, California, USA
Read account on USA above.

1980 Olympics Moscow Soviet Union
Read this shocking account "The citizens of Russia are practically deprived of appeal to Justice, for in most cases the matter of launching, refusal or suspension of criminal case is in militia or procuracy jurisdiction. Eventually, the rights of victim are not protected. He (his lawyer) is not able to get information regarding case investigation; he can not lodge an appeal to the court against investigators’ decision on halting the investigation or its suspension. Practically, in this situation a victim has the only one possibility - to lodge complaint to procuracy higher authorities. Therefore, there is the urgent necessity to carry out the judicial reform in respect of extending the rights of victim - judicial supervision over investigation, and granting person the right to bring in suit on criminal case to the court directly by himself."

1976 Olympics, Montreal Canada
Another shocking account. "The human rights dossier of Canada's boss, namely the US and West, in the region is not defensible. The US secret prisons across the world and its barbaric tortures at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay prisons leave no ground for defending the human rights claims by the West. " (Read full article: http://payvand.com/news/06/nov/1285.html)

I could go on. But I think I got my message across. The idea of extinguishing the Olympic torch for the Human Rights violations in a host nation may not be a good one. We run the risk of not having any Olympics at all, as the Beijing Olympics sets a bad precedent for the future. Olympic Games stand for universal brotherhood. I am sure we don’t want to kill the spirit.

4 comments:

VenkY said...

Very True. While the reason for the protest may be very legitimate, we should also look at the legitimacy and effectiveness (in way of having the required effect) of the way of the protest. Disrupting Olympics or trying to do so will only create more holes in the already stretched and perforated fabric of international cooperation and peace. We can definitely deal with Human Rights Violators in a better manner.
But before taking action on one or more nations which are considered to be perpetrators of these violation, we should remember that there are many others who are well in the same league but shamelessly Scott-Free. This post gave a list of these nations who are still considered good and good-for-olympics because of reasons well known but rarely discussed openly

Sita said...

Superb!! You have hit the nail on the head.

A very nice article for all the people who keep pointing fingers at other people's mistakes. Let them first analyse and see how perfect they are!

Jesus Christ had said " Let the one who has not sinned amongst us throw the stone at the prostitute". Similarly let the country who has not committed any sin or violated human rights so far blame China.

Hari said...

Nice one !!! Some (many)countries worried of East. They think east will over take their superiority in technology outlook and other things so they adopt mean things like this .They will surely reap what they sowed

Bullsight said...

Babu: Now it is not the question to answer whether china should conduct olympic or not. When everyone have the right to fight for the justice, that what tibet trying to express to the world to hear their call.
Tibet is one among the country which follows the peace with the religion and not corrupted with westernism. they believe the growth is far better if they move away from chinese dominance on them. Tibet will not go along with communist china even in the long run..