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Ioc To Scrap International Relays!


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Rogge, should actually put his hands up and say this has to end - it would be the only significant detail of his presidency if he did so (He hasn't been a convincing leader, in my eyes).

You mean he has been totally absent... To say I am disappointed in his behaviour is an understatement (talk about "silence assourdissant").

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Just for the record, one should mention that Athens 2004 had Greek "flame guardians" as well who travelled with the torch around the world. And back then, there were also some quarrels because the Australian government didn't want to have foreign security personnel protecting the flame on the relay segments in Sydney and Melbourne.

Part of the security personnel for Athens International Torch Relay was also American.

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Meaning that Turkey isn't exactly the poster child for Human Rights. Granted, Turkey's record isn't nearly as bad as China's, but they're not on par with the other major Western Democracies either.

It's kinda like the people telling Bush that he should boycott the opening ceremonies. By him heeding those suggestions would only make him a hypocrite. He's the last person that would need to open his mouth or trying to make a statement about Human Rights by not going to Beijing.

Granted but what does the say of the protestors who are likely citizens that are for human rights have anything to do with the nation's overall human rights record? I just don't see how you can equate the two and say that the entire population of a nation is somehow "responsible" for what crimes and actions past regimes have done?

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I'm not saying that they are responsible, but why criticise the "injustices" of another country's actions when their own house isn't exactly in order either. That's what I meant. Like that old saying goes; "you must take care of yourself first before you can take care of someone else".

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But it is not governments that are protesting. It is individual citizens and activists.

My hope for the future is that the IOC will realize that the way to change totalitarian regimes is not by rewarding them, but by taunting them with and denying them the prize they so lust after.

My fear for the future is that this lesson will be lost and that "extinguish the flame" will become a new quasi-Olympic event - given the media attention this has attracted.

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I'm not saying that they are responsible, but why criticise the "injustices" of another country's actions when their own house isn't exactly in order either. That's what I meant. Like that old saying goes; "you must take care of yourself first before you can take care of someone else".

I get what you're saying but did the Turkish authorities themselves critisize the injustice of what China has done, or just public human rights activists? I actually haven't followed the news of what occured when the torch came to Istanbul but I can't imagine that the government official would have wasted their time to condemn or speak out against China's human rights record. I would imagine that some human rights activists would have protested, which I don't see anything wrong with that at all. I mean, this act of protest doesn't mean they're cherry picking as to what they chose to speak out against. I'm sure that they're against violations of human rights wherever it may occur.

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"But it is not the governments that are protesting. It is individual citizens and activists."

I realize that it's citizens. Exactly the point. Why criticise a 'foreign' government about HR's, when you need to start with your own government first. How can someone teach you something when they themselves are still learning too.

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"But it is not the governments that are protesting. It is individual citizens and activists."

I realize that it's citizens. Exactly the point. Why criticise a 'foreign' government about HR's, when you need to start with your own government first. How can someone teach you something when they themselves are still learning too.

Actually, protesting against the government has actually been a common trend over the past couple of years in Turkey. So the situation there has changed quite drastically, through it isn't anywhere close to being picture perfect just yet. Anyways, I still don't see anything wrong with having activists and concerned public citizens protesting against the crimes of the Chinese government. This is given the fact that it's a "good" opportunity to do so, seeing that the torch did come to Istanbul. Not that I'm trying to get even here, but according to your type of thinking - the US and Argentine citizens shouldn't also be protesting at all since their governemnts have been to some degree responsible for committing human rights crimes as well. I just don't see the logic of having human rights activists being responsible to only speak out against the crimes of their own nations and not elsewhere as well.

Edited by Ahmet
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I agree with you, to a point.

The IOC should have indeed known better, but the Olympic movement is bigger than it's constituent parts - the movement is being tarnished by these protests and this Torch Relay should be abandoned.

Rogge, should actually put his hands up and say this has to end - it would be the only significant detail of his presidency if he did so (He hasn't been a convincing leader, in my eyes).

It would solve a lot of the current problems if the relay was abandoned, but the issues themselves will not go away regardless of whether the relay is scrapped or not. While I would accept that these images aren't exactly doing the Olympic movement any good, I don't necessarily think they are doing it much in the way of long-term damage either. The primary target is not the Olympic movement. It is the Chinese regime and when these protestors see the torch relay, in their eyes, being used for Chinese state propaganda, there are bound to be problems.

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Not that I'm trying to get even here, but according to your type of thinking - the US and Argentine citizens shouldn't also be protesting at all since their governemnts have been to some degree responsible for committing human rights crimes as well. I just don't see the logic of having human rights activists being responsible to only speak out against the crimes of their own nations and not elsewhere as well.

The major difference though is how China (& to a lesser degree, Turkey) treat their *own* citizens. Deflecting the subject doesn't change that fact.

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It would solve a lot of the current problems if the relay was abandoned, but the issues themselves will not go away regardless of whether the relay is scrapped or not. While I would accept that these images aren't exactly doing the Olympic movement any good, I don't necessarily think they are doing it much in the way of long-term damage either. The primary target is not the Olympic movement. It is the Chinese regime and when these protestors see the torch relay, in their eyes, being used for Chinese state propaganda, there are bound to be problems.

Exactly. I think that many people are confusing the two, & therefore think that somehow this jeopardizes the Olympic movement. The Olympics have survived much worse than this. If anything, all this is, is a big pot-hole down the Olympic Road.

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The major difference though is how China (& to a lesser degree, Turkey) treat their *own* citizens. Deflecting the subject doesn't change that fact.

I wasn't deflecting anything. All I'm stating is that there isn't anything wrong or hyporactical with the fact if people from wherever they may come from protest against Human Rights crimes elsewhere. That is it.

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Yes, I understand what you meant, but then you brought up the U.S. (& Argentina), which again don't treat their very own citizens as grossly as China (& to a lesser degree, Turkey), which really is what everyone is in protest of.

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Turkey, like any country, has problems, there main one is with the Kurdish and Armenian minorities and the law that says you cannot 'disrespect' the Turkish state.

If most Turks are like TG, though he is somewhat blinded by his patriotism, though we all are, I think Turkey could stand up well against facing their past and coming to grips with what the Young Turk government did during there time in power. The test of any country is to be able to deal with and be knowledgeable about its past, both the good and the bad. Turkey has rich traditions and a heritage that they should be proud of but they shouldn't hide from the negative parts of there history.

Turkey is a country at a cross-roads and they need support not scorn so they don't go down the path millions of Turks have protested against over the past year.

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Yes, I understand what you meant, but then you brought up the U.S. (& Argentina), which again don't treat their very own citizens as grossly as China (& to a lesser degree, Turkey), which really is what everyone is in protest of.

I only brought that up because you made it seem as if it was "hypocritical" for virtually anyone to protest against Human right records elsewhere, when their own nations (i.e. government officials) are guilty of it. A thought that I bitterly disagree with. Anyways, I had brought those nations up since they aren't exactly the innocent while lambs with regards to allegations of torture and whatnot. Who's worse or better is totally a different matter here, which is what you're primarily trying to focus on.

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For the 3rd time, the U.S. does not oppress it's OWN people the grotesque way China does, that's the issue & that's what all the protests are all about. Let's take Turkey out of it for the moment, cuz that's all you seem to be focusing on. The two governments are hardly comparable.

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For the 3rd time, the U.S. does not oppress it's OWN people the grotesque way China does, that's the issue & that's what all the protests are all about. Let's take Turkey out of it for the moment, cuz that's all you seem to be focusing on. The two governments are hardly comparable.

You are making accusations against Turkey that are grossly overstated and inaccurate. Turkey does not repress its own people, it is a free and open country, that like them all has problems, but Turkey is and has made huge efforts to confront and tackle many of these problems, though not all. Turkey is the freest and most open country in the Muslim world and doesn't deserve the criticism you are leveling against it. No country is perfect, but Turkey is better than the majority of them.

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You're twisting things, faster.

I never made any "grossly overstated & inaccurate accusations" against Turkey. Go back & read the thread again. What I said was to a much "lesser degree". I know that Turkey is not nearly as bad as China & something I iterated & that even Ahmet agreed with. I also know that Turkey is the most moderate, secular & liberal country in the Muslim world (I don't need you to tell me that), but it's still not on par with the other Western European nations (even the E.U. has stated that Turkey needs to fix some issues before their E.U. application can progress). That's all I said & then you come up with your word twisting. You're something else.

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You're twisting things, faster.

I never made any "grossly overstated & inaccurate accusations" against Turkey. Go back & read the thread again. What I said was to a much "lesser degree". I know that Turkey is not nearly as bad as China & something I iterated & that even Ahmet agreed with. I also know that Turkey is the most moderate, secular & liberal country in the Muslim world (I don't need you to tell me that), but it's still not on par with the other Western European nations (even the E.U. has stated that Turkey needs to fix some issues before their E.U. application can progress). That's all I said & then you come up with your word twisting. You're something else.

You are still basing an argument that if a person has human rights/international law transgressions against them, they have no right to complain about injustice, human rights abuse, intolerance, bigotry. If this was the case, none of us would be able to say anything about anybody.

France - Algeria

Germany - the Holocaust

Britain - Dyer Massacre

Spain - Spanish Civil War

Italy - Mussolini

Canada - killing unarmed civilians not once but twice

Japan - lets not go through

Australia - aboriginals

The fact is that all nationalities, ethnic groups, and countries have transgressed modern ideas of human rights and international law, but to have these things it took people that had sins on them to stand up and say these things aren't right and this is how it should be.

If the good people do nothing, who is going to save us? If the good people are not going to stand up and be heard, who is going to stand up against the injustices and horrors that befall too many?

I am Canadian, should I stand back and say nothing, do nothing well others today make the same mistakes my fore bearers made before I was around? If anything, those that have transgressed have an obligation to stand up and teach the world from their mistakes. To criticize others criticism by saying that they had made mistakes in the past is a cop-out of dealing with the here and now in regards to your own crimes.

Edited by Faster
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France - Algeria

Germany - the Holocaust

Britain - Dyer Massacre

Spain - Spanish Civil War

Italy - Mussolini

Canada - killing unarmed civilians not once but twice

Japan - lets not go through

Australia - aboriginals

Don't leave out the Russians.

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The answer is no. Reason being is that the 2008 Olympics in Beijing are being hosted by the People's Republic of China as a showcase for their system and their might.

If it were Boston 2008 instead, it would be the City of Boston hosting the Olympics, and it wouldn't be as an idealistic showcase for the American way of life.

There would be minor protests, some banners, some boos, but nothing to this extent. China has put more on the line with these Games than the Americans would have. For the Chinese, this is a huge national event. For the Americans, the Olympics are cool and all, but they are more a showcase for the region, not the nation.

This is aimed directly at the People's Republic of China and is related to the recent events in Tibet.

I think this comparison has to be seen in a more balanced perspective. Do consider the fact that probably few would predict protests of this magniture even late last year. Everything came to a head mainly due to the eruption of violence in Tibet in recent months, which few could attribute to being a direct result of Chinese provocation to spark the rebellion. That the protests erupted at this time after what seem to be decades of human rights abuses has been intriguing.

If race or religion-based violence were to erupt in the streats just before a torch relay organised by the Americans, I am pretty sure demonstrations of a similar magnitude will occur, if not worse.

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My hope for the future is that the IOC will realize that the way to change totalitarian regimes is not by rewarding them, but by taunting them with and denying them the prize they so lust after.

Perhaps, but I don't see China's human rights record improving after failing to host the 2000 games. Nor do I see North Korea, Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, etc, etc, etc, seeing an improved human rights situation for not ever being awarded the games!

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I think the Tibetian activists waited for the right moment to act. They were very aware that the Chinese were going to use the Olympics to reinforce their swelling strength within the domains of the global arena. I think Rogge's comments were more along the lines of "reverse psychology" than actually being serious. It must have been his intention to curb the horrific chain of events surrounding the torch relay. In order to address the damage done to the image of the IOC during so late a stage in the preparations for the Beijing games, he had to say something drastic that would not only attract people's attention but stop them from disrupting the rest of the relay. It was actually reported on BBC that The Chinese Olympic Officials were actually warned by very high profile Olympic executive not to have an international component of the Torch relay. Those people who protested 7 years ago in Moscow about China's human rights record dared to see what others closed their eyes at. Kudos!

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I think the Tibetian activists waited for the right moment to act. They were very aware that the Chinese were going to use the Olympics to reinforce their swelling strength within the domains of the global arena.

Of course they did. Their strategy has been brilliantly planned and executed. It would be naive to think they're total innocents (though I do think the Dalai Lama has been kept out of the loop). That doesn't mean they don't have legitimate greivances and knew the best way to bring attention to those greivances.

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