Examine, if you would, the three photos I have placed on the page. These three images represent, to my mind the best, the worst, and the unspeakable; of the modern Olympic movements, and of those who compete.
The first photo depicts the ultimate in militaristic boastfulness, when Hitler’s Nazi Germany presented the 1936 Olympics as a salute to the Aryan Ideal, with the marching German athletes perfectly in step, last into the Arena as the Host Nation. Hitler was positive that his ‘Master Race’ would sweep the board; but, unfortunately, the Americans had their own ‘secret’ weapon; namely Black American athletes, who wiped the Master Race off the arena floor with their triumphs, when eighteen black men literally ruled the ‘track and field’ events. But Hitler and his Nazi friends were at least honest to their way of thinking, when they depicted the black Americans as ‘Auxiliaries’; but perhaps the Nazis would have made a better run at a meaningful propaganda statement by retailing what happened to those same Black athletes upon their return to segregated America. Jesse Owens was the first black captain of the Ohio State University athletics team, but he had to live off campus, shower separately, eat at designated black-only restaurants and stay in black-only hotels while travelling. He was never invited to meet the President, as most white Olympic athletes were; when Owens attended a non-presidential reception in his honour with his mother at the Waldorf Astoria, they had to use the goods lift; because the hotel lifts were for whites only.
The second photo is for a similar event, but a vastly different world within which it was staged. This is the ‘opening ceremony’ of the 1948 Olympic Games, hosted by London and Great Britain because nobody else wanted it. London was little better than a partially-cleaned-up bombsite, but with clearly marked streets and roads. We had no infrastructure; hell, we didn’t have any money; fighting a World War costs money; and we were broke. The Canadians provided the redwood trees for the diving boards, the Swiss gave us the gymnastic equipment, and Finland gave us the special timber for the basketball court. Our own athletes were attempting to compete whilst everyone was still on rationed food, and the Americans organised daily transatlantic flights of steak for their athletes, because they knew if their guys had to subsist as the locals did, they would collapse from hunger. The entire Games was organised from a rented Catholic Church Hall with three blackboards signed ‘Today’, ‘Tomorrow’ and ‘The Day after Tomorrow’. But it was a cleaner Games, the 1948 London Games was defiantly amateur; it was closer to the dream of Baron De Coubertin than anything which went before, and most, if not all, of what happened in the decades to come. Fanny Blankers-Coen and Emil Zatopek were hailed as heroine and hero, because they were of the people; not manufactured, not groomed and glossed: but just Honest.
The third photo is of the one Olympics which should not have been. It was manufactured, sold and marketed because the sponsors wanted to sell, and Beijing was ready to be that shopfront. A large cadre of ageing apologists for mass-murder hired an American marketing group, sold the story and gained the Olympics. They said that the Internet would be free of censorship, and unencumbered by blocking; they also said that pigs would fly! The gross hypocrisy of a bloodthirsty dictatorship hosting a World-class sporting Event, and the only protests were muted, and ignored. The Games were held, the drug-soaked clowns ran, and jumped, and splashed; and for all I cared farted as well. The Communist Party was well pleased, and the slave-labour factories, owned by PLA generals, did enormous business selling garbage to the Gwailos who flocked to China’s very own blood-soaked Games!