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Sunday, August 15, 2004

Drudge Report banner headline:

"NO JUDO WITH THE JEW"

al Reuters: ATHENS - Iran's world judo champion Arash Miresmaeili refused to compete against an Israeli Sunday, triggering a fresh crisis at the Olympic Games where race, creed or color are barred from interfering in sport.

The International Judo Federation (IJF) failed to agree how to deal with the politically explosive issue at an emergency meeting and said it would hold further talks Monday.

The burning issue was whether any penalty would hit Miresmaeili alone or the entire Iranian team, as the intrusion of the Middle East's bitter politics threatened to fly in the face of the Olympic ideal.

My thanks to Michelle for the tip. She writes,

This just validates why I won't watch the Olympics. It's a farce and sham to pretend these people are our "friends." I won't forget Munich in 1972 or the repulsive spectacle of Hitler hosting them in the 30s.


My fellow Jews, I have a question: What exactly does "Never Again" mean to you? ~ Yael*

JUDO UPDATE: Sports columnist Shaun Powell at Newsday:

The beauty of the Olympics lies in its ability to peacefully unite the world. This magnetic pull is needed now more than ever. And yet, while Olympics chief Jacques Rogge was asking all countries to "put aside" any differences for the sake of the Games, the Iranians were putting another brick in the wall between them and Israel. By fixing it so their fighter couldn't compete, the Iranians spit on the Olympic flame. They laughed at the Olympic spirit. They shook their first in the face of goodwill.

And if the organizers here had any guts, they'd put Iran on the next flight to Tehran.

. . . . an Israeli athlete said he had one wish. "Maybe the next Olympics."