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A Scottish Olympic Team!


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Hmmm. Seems Scottish nationalism is entering a rampant phase at the moment:

LONDON, May 20 AFP - Scotland's new first minister backed the case for a separate Scottish Olympics team today, after a report his administration was to seek permission from the International Olympics Committee (IOC).

The Sunday Times said Alex Salmond, leader of the pro-independence Scottish National Party (SNP), would convene a meeting of the country's main sporting bodies within 100 days to draft a formal application to the IOC.

Speaking on BBC television, Salmond said the issue had not yet been discussed by the 18-member Scottish Executive which he heads and the immediate focus would be on health and education policy plus the Scottish economy.

But he added: ``It's certainly a good idea.''

Salmond's SNP won a one-seat victory in the May 3 elections for the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, which has limited powers to set policy in areas like health, education, transport and law and order.

The party's election manifesto contained plans to hold a referendum on whether to sever the 300-year-old union with England and Wales by 2010.

But he could face a tough time getting that through the 129-member parliament as the SNP does not have a majority and has been unable to form a formal coalition.

Salmond, 52, has previously criticised the current situation whereby Scottish athletes are part of a British team at the Olympics but compete as a separate nation at the Commonwealth Games and in other sports like football.

Last October he described a proposal to have a British football team at the 2012 Olympics as ``high-handed and deplorable''.

His argument for a separate status for Scotland within the IOC is based on other Olympic nations who do not strictly meet the criterion of being ``an independent state recognised by the international community''.

But Craig Reedie, a Scotsman who is vice-president of the British Olympic Committee (BOA), was quoted by the Sunday Times as saying the SNP application would be rejected.

``What they should be doing is concentrating on making sure that as many Scottish athletes as possible are represented in the British team in 2012,'' he added.

AFP

Well, well, that sure raises a lot off interesting issues!

I suppose it would solve the problem, at least, of the Scots standing in the way of a GB Football team for 2012.

If the Scots can persuade the Welsh, the Northern Irish (what the heck, why stop there _ Isle of Man, Jersey, Guernsey etc) to try something similart, it could also solve part of the Eurovision Song Contest problem _ the UK can have its own voting bloc to counter the easterners!

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Actually, when I first came across that news item and posted it, I really dismissed it as another stupid point-scoring idea by Scottish Nationalists (and I notice there's already a few news items opposing the notion appearing).

But on reflection, it's not THAT loony!

Remember, there are already all those anomalies when it comes to the UK participation at the games _ the lack of a unified UK football team, for starters.

Then there's the fact that Scotland already competes in its own right in international games (Commonwealth games) and in various sports (Rugby, cricket etc). So the structure for a national team is already there.

And it's not as if it would be an anomaly _ would a Scottish team really be any different from, say, the likes of Guam, Puerto Rico, Hong Kong, Macao and the other various historical and colonial hangovers having their own NOCs and teams?

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Actually, when I first came across that news item and posted it, I really dismissed it as another stupid point-scoring idea by Scottish Nationalists (and I notice there's already a few news items opposing the notion appearing).

But on reflection, it's not THAT loony!

Remember, there are already all those anomalies when it comes to the UK participation at the games _ the lack of a unified UK football team, for starters.

Then there's the fact that Scotland already competes in its own right in international games (Commonwealth games) and in various sports (Rugby, cricket etc). So the structure for a national team is already there.

And it's not as if it would be an anomaly _ would a Scottish team really be any different from, say, the likes of Guam, Puerto Rico, Hong Kong, Macao and the other various historical and colonial hangovers having their own NOCs and teams?

because only independent states can join the IOC since 1991...

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wow... Interesting idea. An independent scottish olympic team. I would be very suprised if this occurs especially when London is hosting the 2012 games.

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