Olympic Shames 2008

If you were planning to watch the Olympic Games this year, or purchasing any Olympic related products, remember that by doing so, you’re tacitly supporting and condoning the Chinese action in Tibet. If you know of anyone who was due to compete in the Beijing Olympics this year, ask them to consider what is more important: taking a stand against ethnic cleansing, or their own personal achievement.

I know my respect for every single athlete involved in this year’s games will diminish significantly. The sporting community worldwide have the opportunity to take a stand against murder and torture, and exert enormous pressure on the international stage.

Or they could take the money.

Sometimes life isn’t about the funny. Sometimes it’s about showing you care. Tell the world how you feel. If you have a voice use it. Agitate, don’t collaborate…

Cultural genocide is not a hygiene thing; it can be verified. We will surely approach neutral international agencies like UN Human Rights Council, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch to send teams to Tibet and assess the situationTimes Of India

The Tibetan government in exile has said at least 99 people have died so far, including 80 in Lhasa - and have accused the security forces of firing on crowds.BBC News

The government imposed a deadline of midnight on Monday 17 March for individuals involved in the protests to turn themselves in, threatening to “severely punish” those who failed to do so. Eyewitnesses have reported that some individuals are being dragged out of their homes and Tibetans who have pictures of the Dalai Lama in their homes are being taken away.

Official Chinese sources say 13 “innocent civilians” have been killed by the Tibetan rioters

Amnesty International

The government of Nepal should cease arbitrary arrests and detentions, harassment, and the use of excessive force to silence Tibetan protesters, activists and journalists, Human Rights Watch said today. Nepal’s government, which came to power after protests against the rule of King Gyanendra, should reaffirm its commitment to freedom of assembly, association, and expression.Human Rights Watch

“If authorities in Tibet are abiding by international standards they should have nothing to hide, and we and other international observers should be welcomed in,” Senator Consiglio Di Nino, chair of the Parliamentary Friends of Tibet, said in a statement.

“The fear is that hundreds if not thousands of Tibetans are being rounded up beyond the prying eyes of the world and may face lengthy imprisonment and torture as acts of retribution,” Di Nino said.


7 Responses to “Olympic Shames 2008”

  1. Raanan Avidor responds:

    Hi Jack.

    Did you buy lately anything made in China? I bet you did, I know I did. By doing so, we’re tacitly supporting and condoning the Chinese action in Tibet.

    The Olympics are not such a good leverage as, let say, boycotting Chinese products.
    Why do we put all of this struggle on the shoulders of athletes?
    Arriving to the peak of their careers, to be dumped on our civil activism.
    Don’t tell other people to do (or not to do) something. Do it yourself.
    Respect yourself and others.

  2. JackP responds:

    @Ranaan - good point about re: personal economic sanctions. Avoiding buying Chinese goods and services would exert some pressure, but I don’t think — particularly in a society where it’s difficult to find out where things come from before you’ve bought them — this would be as effective a measure as the loud public disapproval that would be associated with athletes choosing not to take part in the Olympics.

    Plus, the economic pressure would not be overtly associated with Tibet, in the way someone publicly choosing not to attend the Olympics would be. But avoiding buying Chinese goods where possible would indeed be another way of expressing disapproval (I’m thinking of the whole ‘don’t buy South African’ ethos in the 80s, to express disapproval at apartheid), so I’m up for that too.

    Why should they be ‘dumped on our civil activism’? It depends how important they feel the issue is. I feel it’s important.

    If they feel it’s important, they should take a stand against it. If they don’t, they won’t. I will lose respect for them, just the same as I lost respect for Queen when they played Sun City in South Africa. It’s my opinion and I’m entitled to change it!

    As for “do it myself”? Well, given that I suggested people don’t collaborate but agitate, then that’s what I am doing. I’m being public about my feelings. I’m asking others — if they feel the same — to do the same.

    “Respect yourself and others”? I do. I respect myself, I respect the rights of the people in Tibet, and I respect my own moral compass that tells me what is happening is wrong, and that I should use my voice to condemn it.

  3. Phil responds:

    Finally something you write that I can argue against :)

    While yes, China’s stand in Tibet is not a good one (obviously a huge understatment), mesured against the recent actions of the 2012 hosts…

    If we succeed in bring Afganistan under some kind of stable peaceful governenece, that could possibly be justified, but that is looking highly unlikely. Iraq on the otherhand is a shameful hell of a thing from start to finish (and we can’t see the finish yet). If anything could dwarf the significance of the atrocities in Tibet it would be that.

    But then two wrongs don’t make a right. So maybe I’m not arguing against you after all… Danm - one of these days….

  4. paul canning responds:

    Jack, the Dalai Lama isn’t calling for a boycott - including an economic boycott > http://www.tibet.net/en/ohhdl/statements/10march/2008.html

    The Free Tibet Campaign is calling for pressure on our government > http://www.freetibet.org/campaigns/get_involved.html

    I think people should be aware of the conditions under which much ‘Made in China’ imports are produced - http://iso.china-labour.org.hk/en/node/39263 - and tell that to the places they buy them from.

  5. Jimmy responds:

    Hi Jack
    To be frank, you show totally no ideas on China history and the feeling of Chinese ordinary people. Thanks for distortions from Western media, which produce a enemy of 1.3 billion of people.

  6. JackP responds:

    well as I’ve never claimed to know Chinese history, not knowing that comes as no surprise to me. However, in the west it’s difficult to know what the feeling of Chinese ordinary people are, because we’re aware that - on the internet at least - Chinese people are restricted in the sites they can visit.

    Plus I don’t know what you’re trying to get across about ‘Chinese ordinary people’. Do you mean that Chinese people would condemn the actions of China in Tibet, in much the same way that I as a UK citizen would suggest the UK had no right to go into Iraq in the first place?

    If that’s what you’re saying then I accept it’s important to distinguish between the views of a country’s citizens and what their government does… for example I’ve never been a fan of US foreign policy, but nearly all of the individuals from the US I’ve ever met have been lovely friendly people…

  7. Buyhard Bob responds:

    Are you boycotting Chinese products? If so, please go to
    .net, where you can register details of your
    ‘non-purchases’ (i.e. information about products you put back on
    the shelf when you realised they were made in China).

Leave your comments

Enter Your Details:

You may use the following markup in your comments:

<a href=""></a> <strong></strong> <em></em> <blockquote></blockquote>

Enter Your Comments:

|Top | Content|

  • Worn With Pride

    • Titan Internet Hosting
    • SeaBeast Theme Demo
    • Technorati
    • Guild of Accessible Web Designers
    • my Facebook profile

Blog Meta

|Top | FarBar|

Attention: This is the end of the usable page!
The images below are preloaded standbys only.
This is helpful to those with slower Internet connections.