Wednesday, April 09, 2008

China Olympics Protests

Clinton & Pelosi want to boycott the opening ceremonies in Beijing. Right now, protests in San Franciso (Pelosi's district) where the Olympic torch is passing through, are continuing since yesterday. London & Paris have also held protests against China's abysmal human rights policies & the occupation of Tibet resulting in a recent revolt. The Olympic body is contemplating discontinuing the relay.

From the Irish Times:

Protesters are calling for a boycott of the games, citing China's poor human rights record, and various governments have been urged not to send representatives to the opening ceremony.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern said the issue of Ireland boycotting the Olympics had not been discussed but would be reviewed in the future.
He said, however, "we have to deal with China in the long term." If the Government threw a "hissy fit" and refused to attend the opening ceremony it might find "that Chinese will turn their back and not engage with us."

Some history pertaining to the last major Olympic boycott is useful. My husband had the place right, I was fuzzy on it. We boycotted the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. Why? You'll love this one. We were protesting the recent Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. 62 other countries refused to participate. Four years later the Soviets boycotted the L.A. Olympics. It was Pres. Jimmy Carter who urged others to boycott due to Soviet "continued aggression."

Will we boycott? Ah, I think not. It's all about big business sponsorship nowadays & Chinese trade. NBC, Coke, Visa, McDonald's let their investments bomb? I think not. And it's about the athletes. The last boycott did zilch. The Russians stayed in Afghanistance until their losses were too high and expensive. They also decided that they could never win & their presence would be demanded for a long time to come. Sound familiar? So they left.

Boycotting the Olympics doesn't work. The Irish take, long known for the excellency of its dimplomatic corps, hit the mark:
"Speaking on RTÉ's Prime Time last night, he said: If we have learnt anything from the situation up in the North, it is not megaphone diplomacy that works, it is hard raft dialogue on a one-to-one basis."
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