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Editorial

There Is an Urgent Need for the Olympic Games to be Permanently Held in Greece

In the end, nothing is left unaffected by the rivalries between states.

Not even the Olympic Games, which in ancient times actually brought wars to a stop. All hostilities between the Greek city-states paused for a month, for as long as the Games lasted.

It probably has come to your attention that the Beijing Winter Olympics are being held and that, apparently, the Chinese have successfully organized them, despite the great difficulties they face (and are still facing) due to the coronavirus.

In fact, they have imposed great sacrifices on their people, applying very strict measures. Entire cities were closed for days or even weeks to control the spread of the coronavirus.

A good portion of the world is following the games passionately, watching every sport and each athlete. “The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat,” as they say.

The Chinese President watched the Games together with his Russian counterpart. The American president did not attend. If he had, it would have been tantamount to political suicide.

American media coverage of these Games is subdued. They project every negative element and moment. Like the disappearance from the light of publicity of an athlete, a member of an ethnic minority that is being oppressed to the point of genocide by China. On the other hand, there was also the questionable decision of two California-born athletes of Chinese descent to join China’s national team. One of them even won a gold medal.

The politicization of the Olympic Games, as well as the unbearable financial burden of the construction of Olympic facilities that brings the economies of many countries to their knees for years, lend urgency to the issue of permanently holding the Olympic Games in Greece, at least the Summer Games.

It is now clear that if this is not done, the Olympic Games will become further degraded. They will stop being interesting. And the citizens will refuse to shoulder their enormous financial burden.

So let’s move forward while there is time. Let Greece make the first move – and remind the world of the dazzling Games of 2004.

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This article is part of a continuing series dealing with reports of Greek POWs in Asia Minor in the Thessaloniki newspaper, Makedonia in July 1936.

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