A recent documentary on the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia is titled “Putin’s Games” and is summarized here. The movie has not been released yet but I intend to see it as soon as it becomes available. According to the web, the movie discusses the 1) bribes that Russia paid to win the games 2) the vast corruption occurring during construction 3) other ill effects of
citing siting the games in a sub-tropical climate.
The documentary interviews a billionaire Russian who fled to the UK after refusing to pay immense bribes during construction:
“We received explicit threats: ‘You’ll be soaked with blood; drowned in blood,'” he said. “It was very straightforward. We know the history. Russia generally does not care much for human life.”
As far as bribing Olympic officials to beat Austria in order to get the games originally…
The money thrown around by the Kremlin to ensure that Russia was awarded the games is also revealed in the film. Karl Schranz, a former Austrian Olympic skiing champion and personal adviser to Mr Putin on bringing the Olympics to Sochi, talks about the big-money lobbying that went into the games – cash that Leonid Tyagetschev, the former head of Russia’s Olympic Committee, said was “practically unlimited.” The money was used to lobby for Sochi and against Salzburg, which was also in the running before, in 2007, the International Olympic Committee to give the games to Russia.
The Olympic Committees are against the release of this documentary and per the article:
Such was the displeasure of the International Olympic Committee when it heard of it that it refused to allow the use of the word “Olympic” in the title, or the use of any archived Olympic footage. They also wrote accusing the producers of making a “politically motivated” hatchet-job.
After rewarding the games to serial human rights violators in China and Russia, how can the Olympics even pretend to have a shred of credibility? It is astounding that they would call a documentary filmmaker who explains how Putin’s Russia is a hotbed of corruption a “hatchet-job”. What did they think would happen when you chose Russia for the winter Olympics? They need to read the biography of Putin by Judah, since this fiasco was all preordained.
Cross posted at LITGM
9 thoughts on “The Olympics Are In Bed With the Devil”
Corruption around the Olympics?
I’m shocked, shocked I tell you.
Old joke from circa 2002, inspired by the Olympics:
What is the official mascot of the Salt Lake City games?
The Tickle-my-palm Elmo.
I will be interested to see how many of the people who have been threatening boycotts of these Olympics because of Russia’s anti-gay climate actually follow through.
Oh they’ll boycott due to the anti-gay climate right until the figure skating commences. But once Dick Button takes to the mic, fuggetaboutit.
The original article can be found in the Telegraph here, which is a more browser-friendly site.
*siting, not citing.
A nitpick, but spelling and grammar mistakes (my own and others’) drive me up the wall.
Guess the Russians made Salt Lake look like amateurs
Ha ha fixed “siting”
Thanks, Carl. It won’t end Russian corruption or fix healthcare.gov, but we have to start somewhere.
“After rewarding the games to serial human rights violators in China and Russia, how can the Olympics even pretend to have a shred of credibility?”
Fool me once (1936: winter and summer) shame on me; fool me twice (or more) (1940!, 1944!, 1968?, 1980, 1984, 1988?, 2008) is proof of bribery. When was the goal of the Olympics (or for that matter, FIFA) to uplift the masses by well-placed games?
The Olympics corruption is small compared to FIFA, which is a typical EUropean bureaucracy.
No doubt the biggest stain on the Olympics were its games held in the epitome of r/c/g oppression: the USA. Not according to me, of course, but I did go to college.
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BTW: notice that prior to WW2, the games were scheduled for the Axis powers in 1936, 1940, and 1944 (winter only). Makes one wonder what sort of government EUropean bureaucrats admire.
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