The 1936 Olympics took place in Germany. In 1938, Hitler was generally regarded in the West as a cofounder of the Munich “peace in our time” agreement.
So in 1936, the peaceful Munich he envisioned still lay ahead. The 1936 Olympics were to bring about warmer social ties between him and the victims of his forthcoming attacks. No wonder President Roosevelt attended the Games.
Three years later Hitler was waging a world war for world domination. To prevent his subordinates’ betrayal of him to the English-speaking countries, after his debacle near Moscow, he secretly ordered them to begin the extermination of Jews. This way, in the eyes of the U.S. and the British, his subordinates were seen as the heinous criminals, while he was to be seen as having known nothing about the “final solution.”
Fortunately for his enemies, he ran out of resources to continue his development of nuclear weapons, the key to global domination.
Such was the post-history of the 1936 Olympics.
As for the 2008 Olympics in China (Aug. 8-24), Human Rights Watch began its section of Aug. 2, 2007, in Yahoo! (see http://china.hrw.org) with the following utopia in big type: “The 2008 Beijing Olympic Games are a historic opportunity for the Chinese Government to show the world that it has the confidence to make tangible and sustainable progress in ensuring basic human rights for its 1.3 billion citizens.”
I feel that this utopia is so utopian that any sarcastic remarks of mine in the past decades concerning the march of China’s dictatorship toward “basic human rights” would be anticlimactic.
The dictatorship of China holds Olympics for the same purposes Hitler held them in 1936.
On Oct. 11, 2007, at a special conference of the Carnegie Foundation for International Peace, Bob Dietz, the Asia program coordinator of the Committee to Protect Journalists, spoke about the persecution of China’s journalists in China.
He gave no statistics concerning the journalists tortured by the dictatorship of China. But he said that China had been leading the world since 1999 “in the number of jailed journalists.” Yet despite this “world record” (by no means Olympic), “in 2001, the International Olympic Committee awarded the Games to China.”
The public communications in China are not created by journalists themselves. Certainly, Zhao Yan did not create either The New York Times or its Beijing bureau, or his job as a researcher in that bureau. Yet he was imprisoned in 2004 for a New York Times (correct) prediction that Jiang Zemin would retire as the head of the military commission.
Chen Kai, a former Chinese national basketball player, now in Washington, D.C., published on Sept. 28, 2007, in Chinaview and The Epoch Times (both “dissident publications”) a letter to President Bush, calling him to “join our Olympic Freedom Run,” to “clarify your moral standing and solidarity with freedom-loving people in China”:
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear President Bush:
As the 2008 Beijing Olympics fast approach, we as freedom-loving people realize as that time comes, we are standing at the threshold between human freedom in our future and human despotism from our past. Having learned that you had accepted an invitation from Mr. Hu Jintao to attend the opening ceremony for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, I like to extend my invitation to you to join our “Olympic Freedom Run” in Washington DC on September 30, 2007 from the Memorial of Communism Victims to the Lincoln Memorial.
As a former Chinese National basketball-Team player, I feel compelled by my conscience to speak out — not just to speak out against oppression, slavery and human degradation, but to speak out for human freedom, for hope, for a better tomorrow. I am speaking out not just for those innocent lives perished under the communist regime, not just for those who still suffer under the same oppressive regime of the Chinese communist government, but also for those who are suffering under all kinds of despotism, old and new, in the world.
Chen Kai recalls the 1936 Berlin Olympics:
History should not repeat itself, and we as free people will make sure that Olympic spirit is nothing but the spirit of human freedom, but not opium to induce illusions for despotism and tyranny. Any government that wants to use the Olympics for its own oppressive and reactionary policies against human freedom should be put into the spotlight and have evil exposed. The 2008 Beijing Olympics should be an example of how the cause of human freedom is pushed forward by the Olympic movement, not pushed backward.
As an athlete with a conscience, I call upon all athletes, all coaches, all people in the athletic establishment in the world, all sports fans and all tourists who will participate in the 2008 Beijing Olympics to awaken your conscience, pluck up your courage and listen to the call from the deepest recess of your soul to join our “Olympic Freedom T Shirt” global movement.
Chen Kai correctly assumes that President Bush will not be tortured or even just imprisoned for “x” years, for wearing an “Olympic Freedom” T-shirt. Certainly not now — not yet.
When you stroll on the Tiananmen Square, under the stare of the giant portrait of Mao — the biggest mass murderer in human history, when you remember those who died in the 1989 Tiananmen massacre, wear our “Olympic Freedom T-shirt.”
Mr. President, we do not advocate boycotting the Beijing Summer Olympics. We hope that you use your presence in the 2008 Beijing Olympics to spread the message of Truth, Justice, Liberty and Dignity to all human beings on the planet earth. We want to see you use your moral conviction, your appreciation of the human yearning for the eternal values of mankind to spread the message of hope and human freedom.
I, as a Chinese athlete with a conscience, call upon the voice in your conscience; call upon your moral courage, your action and your prayer for freedom for the Chinese people, for freedom for all the people in the world. In wearing our “Olympic Freedom T-shirt” and joining our “Olympic Freedom Run,” you are expressing your solidarity and your support for the freedom-loving people in China. You are indeed building a better tomorrow for the world.
Hereby I cordially extend my invitation to you to join our Washington DC “Olympic Freedom Run.”
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