A fish rots from the head. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is the head of the Olympic movement, and it is rotten to the core. Long ago, this vile organisation abandoned its stated principles of “excellence, friendship and respect” to embrace greed, corruption and abuse.
For many, the enduring image of Bejing 2022 will not be one of Olympic glory, but the tragic and bizarre spectacle attending the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and 15-year-old figure skater Kamila Valieva. Once again, the Russians got caught cheating: Valieva tested positive for a banned medication. Still the IOC allowed her to compete, and then stood by while this child and her Olympic dreams were publicly crushed. After her performance collapsed, her despicable coach humiliated her, badgering her about on-ice failures as Valieva left the rink.
Thomas Bach, the IOC president, expressed outrage at the coach and team’s conduct but said nothing more about the Russian Olympic Committee and its failure to protect this child.
Turning a blind eye to the deeper issues plaguing the Games is nothing new for the IOC. For a third straight Olympics, Russia was allowed to compete as the “Russian Olympic Committee” under sanctions imposed because of a widespread state-sponsored doping and cover-up scheme at the 2014 Sochi Games.
It seems nothing is unaffected by the rot. Bribery scandals have cropped up around the IOC site selection process repeatedly for the past two decades. The Salt Lake City scandal in 2002, criminal charges for the chief of Rio 2016 and new suspicions about bribes for Tokyo 2020.
If the IOC’s corruption only involved site selection bribery and accepting rampant doping, that would be reprehensible. But the organisation’s conduct during the Beijing Games suggests that its corruption has metastasised into complicity with genocide, sexual assault and child abuse.