The Kamila Valieva case shows yet again that the IOC is betraying teen athletes

A fish rots from the head. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is the head of the Olympic movement, and it is rotten to the core. Long ago, this vile organisation abandoned its stated principles of “excellence, friendship and respect” to embrace greed, corruption and abuse. For many, the enduring image of Bejing 2022 will not be one of Olympic glory, but the tragic and bizarre spectacle attending the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and 15-year-old figure skater Kamila Valieva. Once again, the Russians got caught cheating: Valieva tested positive for a…

Why Companies Struggled to Navigate Olympics Sponsorships

WASHINGTON — Companies usually shell out for Olympic sponsorship because it helps their business and reflects well on their brands. But this year, with the Olympics in Beijing, Procter & Gamble paid even more to try to prevent any negative fallout from being associated with China’s repressive and authoritarian government. The company, one of 13 “worldwide Olympic partners” that make the global sports competition possible, hired Washington lobbyists last year to successfully defeat legislation that would have barred sponsors of the Beijing Games from selling their products to the U.S.…

With Valieva, Doping Concerns Extend to a New Generation of Olympians

The announcement that Kamila Valieva, the 15-year-old Russian figure skating star, had tested positive for a banned substance echoed another dark Olympic era. And it sent a chilling reminder that female athletes in certain sports have long been considered disposable in countries that support state-sponsored doping. From the late 1960s until the late 1980s, East Germany, a country of fewer than 17 million people, kept pace in the Olympic medal chase with the United States and the Soviet Union with systematic doping known by the bland euphemism “Supporting Means.” The…

China bags Winter Games gold and a rap for ‘cynical ploy’ of Uyghur torchbearer

Glory on the track. Growing criticism off it. China ended day one of these Winter Olympics by celebrating a thrilling first gold medal, while also finding itself facing growing condemnation from human rights groups after selecting a Uyghur to light the Olympic flame. The small number of fans in the Capital Indoor Stadium because of Covid-19 regulations certainly made themselves heard as China’s mixed relay quartet held off Italy by the width of a blade in a dramatic short-track speedskating final. Afterwards, Wu Dajing, the country’s most famous active winter…

Once Again the Olympic Games Will Begin, Despite Everything

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The Winter Olympics will go forward. They always do. The opening ceremony is Friday in China, which is hosting the celebration of sport and unity even as it is caught in the cross hairs of international controversy over its record on human rights. Amid the hoopla and celebration, the Beijing government will be asked about its crackdowns in Hong Kong and Tibet and the repressive treatment of its predominantly Muslim Uyghur minority. Perhaps the organizers or the International Olympic Committee will give faint assurances about the well-being of the tennis…

For Olympic Sponsors, ‘China Is an Exception’

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At the bottom of the slope where snowboarders will compete in the 2022 Beijing Olympics, an electronic sign cycles through ads for companies like Samsung and Audi. Coca-Cola’s cans are adorned with Olympic rings. Procter & Gamble has opened a beauty salon in the Olympic Village. Visa is the event’s official credit card. President Biden and a handful of other Western leaders may have declared a “diplomatic boycott” of the Winter Games, which begin next week, but some of the world’s most famous brands will still be there. The prominence…

Where Is Peng Shuai? Tennis Players and Fans Still Want to Know

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But Chinese television did not broadcast the women’s tournaments in 2022 that were played ahead of the Open despite owning the rights. It is unclear whether this constitutes a boycott. In 2019, CCTV stopped airing N.B.A. games after Daryl Morey, the general manager of the Houston Rockets at the time, expressed support for pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong. No events for the WTA or ATP, the professional men’s tennis tour, have been held in China since early 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic, which had shut down international sports events…

Your Monday Briefing: A U.K. Accusation

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Good morning. We’re covering reports of Russia’s positioning in Ukraine, Beijing’s hard-line Olympic strategy and miserable conditions at a Chinese tire factory in Serbia. Britain accuses Russia of Ukraine plot The British government said that the Kremlin appeared to be developing plans to install a pro-Moscow leader in Ukraine. The highly unusual public statement, backed by U.S. officials, comes at a pivotal moment in high-stakes negotiations. Moscow has deployed more than 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders that could, according to American officials, attack anytime. According to the assessment, Russian planners…

China Won’t Sell Olympics Tickets to Chinese Public

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China had already barred foreign spectators from attending the Winter Games that begin in Beijing in less than a month. On Monday, it announced that most Chinese people won’t be able to attend either. Citing the evolving threat from the coronavirus pandemic, the Beijing 2022 organizing committee announced that it was ending ticket sales to the events “to ensure the safety of all participants and spectators.” The decision came less than two days after health authorities reported Beijing’s first case of the Omicron variant and ordered an immediate lockdown and…

As Olympics Near, China Tightens Rules and Athletes Invent Their Own

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The exemption, however, comes with a stringent requirement that foreigners not leave a “closed loop” of hotels and sports venues, linked by special buses and trains. “We must never go outside the closed loop, let alone reach the city level — this is our bottom line,” said Huang Chun, deputy director of the Olympic organizing committee’s Office of Epidemic Prevention and Control. For those outside China, getting to the Olympics in the first place remained the most urgent goal. Many are now taking proactive measures to keep the virus at…

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