Underneath Washington's groundless accusation against China is its intention to serve its self-interests at the expense of the athletes.
As China is to welcome with open arms athletes from all over the world to the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games, the White House announced a so-called "diplomatic boycott" of the Games on Monday under the pretext of human rights.
The move is a pure political provocation. Underneath Washington's groundless accusation against China is its intention to serve its self-interests at the expense of the athletes. Such a plot goes against the common aspiration of athletes coming to the Games and sports fans all across the world, and is thus a blot on the spirit of the Olympic Charter.
Beijing is chosen as the host city of the Games by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) via an open and widely-representative vote in 2015. The goal of the Olympic Movement is to contribute to building a better world through sport practiced without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding, solidarity and fair play. .
This year, the IOC added "Together" to its "Faster, Higher, Stronger" motto. IOC President Thomas Bach said this amendment sent a clear signal that "we want to put special focus on solidarity," and it tapped into the trends of our times. Clearly, the highly politicized attempt by those U.S. politicians blasphemes the spirit of the Olympic Movement, and will only dampen the solidarity desperately needed in a world battered by an unprecedented challenges.
Moves seeking to disrupt and politicize the Olympics are nothing new. In his opening speech to the 136th Session of the IOC last year, Bach warned that "in some people's minds the ghosts of the past are rearing their ugly heads." The examples and warnings throughout history deserve deep reflection.
Furthermore, it is sheer wishful thinking of some U.S. politicians that they can force Beijing into some sort of concession via any diplomatic boycott. Conventionally, it is the National Olympic Committees (NOCs) that invite their political authorities to accompany their athletes to the Games. Neither the host city nor the city's country issues the invitation. Therefore, if the boycotters get their way, it is just a denial to their own NOC, nothing to do with China.
The international community has already voiced their opposition to the politicization of the Olympics. IOC Olympic Games Executive Director Christophe Dubi spoken highly of the preparations of the Beijing 2022 Games. The Olympics are "always an opportunity to make the world come together," he said in early November. As Bach has mentioned, "the Olympic Games are a reaffirmation of our shared humanity and contribute to unity in all our diversity." It should never be a hotbed created by certain politicians of sabotaging cooperation, provoking division or stoking hatred.