The Politics Behind Olympics Games

The Politics Behind Olympics Games

Among the​ Greeks,​ fitness competitions and games were nationalistic in​ spirit; states were said to​ have been prouder of​ Olympic victories than of​ battles won. Women,​ foreigners,​ slaves,​ and dishonored persons were forbidden to​ compete. Contestants were required to​ train faithfully for 10 months before the​ games and had to​ take an​ oath that they had fulfilled the​ training requirements before participating. at​ first,​ the​ Olympic Games were confined to​ running,​ but over time new events were added. the​ winners of​ the​ Olympics were crowned with chaplets of​ wild olive,​ and in​ their home city-states male champions were also awarded valuable gifts and privileges.

As a​ visible focus of​ world energies,​ the​ Olympic Games have been prey to​ many factors that have thwarted their ideals of​ world co-operation and athletic excellence. Like in​ ancient Greece,​ nationalistic fervour has fostered intense rivalries that have at​ times threatened the​ survival of​ the​ games. Although officially only individuals are able to​ win Olympic medals,​ nations routinely assign political significance to​ the​ feats of​ their citizens and teams. For example,​ between 1952 and 1988 rivalry between the​ United States and the​ Soviet Union,​ rooted in​ mutual political antagonism,​ resulted in​ each boycotting games hosted by the​ other (Moscow,​ 1980; Los Angeles,​ 1984).

Politics has influenced the​ Olympic Games in​ other ways,​ from the​ propaganda of​ the​ Nazis in​ Berlin (1936) to​ pressures leading to​ the​ exclusion of​ white-ruled Rhodesia from the​ Munich games (1972). at​ Munich,​ nine Israeli athletes were kidnapped and murdered by Palestinian terrorists.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC),​ which sets and enforces Olympic policy,​ has struggled with the​ licensing and commercialisation of​ the​ games,​ the​ need to​ schedule events to​ accommodate television networks,​ and the​ monitoring of​ athletes who seek illegal competitive advantage,​ often through the​ use of​ performance-enhancing drugs. in​ 1998 a​ scandal erupted with revelations that bribery and favouritism had played a​ role in​ the​ awarding of​ the​ 2002 Winter Games to​ Salt Lake City,​ Utah,​ and in​ the​ selection of​ some earlier venues.

But,​ regardless of​ the​ Olympic Games tensions,​ it​ is​ historically proven that sports have acted as​ a​ liaison between nations and have greatly contributed to​ their evolution. Beginning with the​ sociological,​ psychological and physiological aspects of​ the​ human nature,​ sports have gained the​ praise of​ people worldwide,​ as​ they have contributed to​ their well being. Group-oriented,​ since in​ order to​ be a​ winner one has to​ compete,​ sport brings people closer together and generates team-spirit along with mind and physical awareness. But,​ whether or​ not the​ contemporary Olympic Games act as​ an​ opportunity for nations to​ learn from one another and cooperate or​ are just another opportunity for people to​ engage in​ competitive and hostile rivalries,​ only historians of​ the​ future will be able to​ judge with some certainty.

The Politics Behind Olympics Games

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