Now that the Winter Olympics of Turin (or Torino) have ended, the eyes of Olympic watchers are turning to the next Olympic host city, which for now is still Beijing, the capital of Communist China. Not content with the Hitler Olympics of 1936 and the Brezhnev Games of 1980, the International Olympic Committee chose to fete a dangerous, anti-freedom, and murderous dictatorship yet again. However, we can still show our determination not to let freedom be slighted by either the IOC or the Chinese Communist Party. The democratic world can demand that the 2008 Games be moved, and that if they are not moved we (the U.S., Canada, and the rest of the democratic world) should not let our athletes step foot in Communist China for the Games, but instead will conduct an alternate sporting event on our own.
Why am I raising the issue now? For starters, it would take time to move the Olympics, or to establish the alternate event. An alternate city must be chosen and made ready in either scenario. Additionally, the Communists will soon begin a two-year propaganda warm-up for the Beijing Olympiad, so it would be best to make the case against it sooner rather than later.
The reasons for moving or boycotting the Games are clear. No regime has more blood on its hand than the Chinese Communist Party. It has murdered over 60 million people in just over a half-century. Moreover, its murderous ways (contrary to popular belief) have not let up one iota, as shown in the persecution of Falun Gong and the Hanyuan County massacre.
Additionally, Communist China is a menace to the democratic world. The regime is the largest benefactor of terrorism on earth. To this day, it has propped up the Stalinist regime of Kim Jong-il, who has himself starved millions to death in northern Korea. Just recently, the regime granted itself permission to conquer the island democracy of Taiwan, and recent reports reveal that the Communists will do just that by 2012 at the latest. The fact that the upcoming Olympics are a critical part of the pre-war propaganda campaign should be reason enough to move the Games .
Of course, not everyone is looking to move or boycott the games. In part, this is due to historical amnesia on the Berlin Games of 1936. While in America that Olympiad is best known for Jesse Owens four gold medals, in Europe it was seen as a Nazi organizational triumph and geopolitical bonanza. Moscow was headed for the same glory with the 1980 Olympics until President Carter pulled the U.S. out of those Games (easily one of the most admirable acts of his entire political career).
Another fallacy used to defend the Communist Olympiad is the theory that the 1988 Olympic games somehow pushed South Korea toward democracy. Nothing could be further from the truth. The protests against the South Korean regime took place in 1987, not 1988. The pressure to democratize came not from the prospect of the 1988 Games, but from the Reagan Administration and the South Korean regime’s hand-picked choice for President, who adopted the democratic reforms of the opposition as his own platform and threatened to refuse the Presidency if said reforms weren't enacted. The grateful people of South Korea elected him President, democratically, six months before the Olympics even began.
No such circumstances exist in Communist China. The Communists do not rely on the U.S. for its protection (as South Korea did), but in fact see America as an enemy. The cadres are focused exclusively on justifying their regime’s survival to an increasingly restive people. The proper historical model is not Seoul, but the aforementioned Moscow or Berlin.
There is still time for the democratic world to take a stand for freedom. Both of Beijing's major competitors for the 2008 Games (Toronto and Paris) missed out on 2012. Either could serve as an alternate site; while Canada may be skittish about this, given the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, France might be willing to step forward once Jacques Chirac’s successor is elected next year.
Yours truly has been pushing for a Beijing boycott from the moment the Communist capital was awarded the Games in 2001. At this point, with so many athletes' plans already in full swing, an alternate event is the only fair outcome should the IOC not be convinced to move the Olympics. Still, a "Democracy Games," as it were, would be an excellent alternative to the Beijing Olympiad.
Whatever option is taken - boycott, relocation, or an alternative event - the athletes of the democratic world should not be turned in tools for Communist propaganda. If the IOC members will not stand for freedom, the U.S., Canada, and its fellow democracies must do it for them.
Cross-posted to the Shotgun