Should president Bush or the USOC, boycott the Beijing Olympic Games

A major story that is pushed off the front pages due to the Hillary Vs Obama drama is the 2008 Summer Olympic Games which will open on Aug 8th in Beijing, China. Last April we visited Beijing and witnesses hundreds of workers racing to complete construction of the 31 Beijing game venues including the 91,000 seat “birds nest” which is the new national stadium site of the opening ceremony.

Lately we read of crackdowns of Tibet citizens by Chinese military that is causing quite a ruckus around the globe. This is in addition is the ongoing concern of human rights violations on the mainland in China.

The 27 member nations of the European Union EU have not called for an official boycott as yet however we need to monitor this story closely. German Chancellor Merkel has announced that she has no intention of attending the games. Other national figures protesting include President Václav Klaus of the Czech Republic and Donald Tusk, Poland’s prime minister.

Whom do we hurt by these actions? I can recall when US President Jimmy Carter boycotted the Moscow Games in retribution for Russia’s invasion of Afghanistan. As a result athletes representing 16 nations, led by the U.S.A., did not compete in the 1980 Moscow Summer Games. Payback came from Russia during the Reagan years when they, along with 13 other nations, boycotted the 1984 Summer Games that were held in Los Angeles.

The real victims of boycotts are all of the Olympic athletes who train for years to compete against the “best in the world.”

In my view they should not be punished by the actions of their national leaders. Juice readers. What are your thoughts?

About Larry Gilbert