How apropos; the opening ceremony in Beijing won rave reviews (well, almost rave reviews - Epoch Times), gave the Communists everything they wanted to begin the propaganda show - and like every other Communist-run production, it was exposed as a fake (London Telegraph). So the Potemkin capital of the Potemkin regime had a Potemkin Olympic ceremony!
That was the good news coming from Beijing, at least compared to the murder of Todd Bachman (San Francisco Chronicle). Relax, I am not claiming that the Communists ordered his murder, but I do have to wonder about something regarding these Games.
Everyone is saying that security in Beijing is as tight as it could possibly be, and from thousands of miles away, I am in no position to argue. That said, I have to ponder just what that security is watching and restricting - namely religious believers (Epoch Times, Washington Post, and Washington Times), political dissidents (Epoch Times and Washington Post), Taiwanese (Epoch Times), Tibetans, etc.
Not to be rude, but I have to ask: if the "security" in Beijing weren't so busy cracking down on dissidents of all stripes, would there have been more of it available to patrol the streets, in particular the tourist areas? According to the AP, "Chinese authorities unsettled by the attack during the Beijing Olympics tightened security at tourist spots around the city" (emphasis added). I have to believe that said security could have been tightened before the Games began without so many being diverted for political reasons.
Moreover, while such a statement may sound outrageous in the particular, it makes sense in the abstract for another reason: when political dissent is considered criminal, actual crime is no longer seen as so outrageous. The cadres themselves have resorted to theft and murder repeatedly to achieve their aims. So from a philosophical perspective as well as a resource one, tyranny and criminality seem to go together.
The Beijing Olympics has garnered a slew of protests and warnings over Communist China's human rights abuses (Boycott 2008, CTV, The Epoch Times, more Epoch Times, and National Review Online). As far as I know, however, I'm the only one to broach this subject. Maybe it's because I'm a little more willing to take the logic train where others fear to go - or maybe it's because I'm way off-base.
Either way, the fake splendor that was the opening ceremony can't erase complaints from the Chinese people about the Games (Epoch Times), or the Communists' continued efforts to replace America as the lead power in the world (BBC and Financial Times) - complete with propping up their Korean colony (One Free Korea). It hasn't even stopped James Dorn's slow shift away from the "engagement" crowd (Washington Times), FWIW.