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Pandemic, despite opposition, the Tokyo Olympics are still being held

Japan has spent at least $ 15.4 billion on hosting the Olympics and wants to leave its face to host the Tokyo Olympics on July 23.

Tokyo, Japan — Will the postponed Tokyo Olympics be held despite rising opposition and a pandemic?

The answer is almost certainly “yes”.

Richard Pound, a senior member of the International Olympic Committee, emphasized in an interview with a British newspaper.

“These things work, except for Armageddon, which we can’t see or anticipate,” Pound told Evening Standard.

Tokyo is under the state of emergency of COVID-19, but IOC Vice President John Coates said the game will start on July 23.

As an exclamation point, the Australian softball team (the first major group of foreign players set up an Olympic base in Japan) arrived in Tokyo on Tuesday.

So, the Olympics are just around the corner. but why?

Start with the Government of Japan’s decision to bet billions of dollars to maintain an overwhelmingly favorable contract for the IOC and policies that may help maintain the position of Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

These factors overturned bitter criticism from medical institutions concerned that the Olympics could spread a variant of COVID-19. Cancellation call from Asahi Shimbun, The game sponsor and the second best-selling newspaper in the country. The US State Department has issued a Level 4 “Travel Ban” warning to Japan, along with Tokyo and other regions, in an emergency that expires on June 20.

And the face of salvation.Japan is Officially spent $ 15.4 billion However, some government audits suggest that the Olympics are more than that. All but $ 6.7 billion are publicly funded. China, a geopolitical rival, 2022 winter olympic games Only six months after the end of Tokyo, you can claim the center stage if Tokyo fails.

The IOC, a non-profit organization based in Switzerland, manages the iron walls under the following conditions: So-called host city contractAnd you’re unlikely to cancel alone, as you’ll lose billions of dollars in broadcast rights and sponsorship revenue.

Although the IOC describes itself as a national sports league, it is a multi-billion dollar sports business, with nearly 75% of its revenue coming from broadcasting rights sales. Another 18% are from 15 top sponsors.

Andrew Zimbalist, an economist at Smith College in Massachusetts and extensive author of the Olympics, said the IOC could lose about $ 3.5 billion to $ 4 billion in broadcast revenue if the Tokyo Olympics were cancelled. He estimates that there may be a small portion of this $ 400- $ 800 million covered by cancellation insurance.

The US broadcaster NBCUniversal is the IOC’s largest single source of income.

“The IOC also feels a commitment from historical momentum to do this,” Zimbalist said in an interview with The Associated Press. “Their DNA as a whole says,’Oh, yeah. The Japanese government really doesn’t have the right to cancel the game. They can go to the IOC and plead, and they’re probably doing it. “

Of course, the Japanese government can cancel the Olympics. Bringing the IOC into a court battle with Tokyo would be a public catastrophe. Therefore, such an arrangement will be settled privately.

The IOC’s lofty image goes against the myriad corruption scandals of the last few decades.Is The chairman of the Japanese Olympic Committee was forced to resign Two years ago, he was also an IOC member and had a scandal related to bribery of IOC members, a similar scandal surrounding the bid for Rio de Janeiro to land at the 2016 Olympics.

“The Olympics are a very strong brand. They are a unique brand. They are a monopoly,” Zimbalist said. “They are not regulated by any government. All of them probably created a sense of immortality.”

The medical community has offered a relentless but ineffective opposition. The Tokyo Metropolitan Medical Association, which has 6,000 members, has requested Prime Minister Suga to cancel. The same is true of the Japanese Medical Association, which chairs the Olympics, which may spread a variant of the coronavirus. Nurses and other medical groups are also repulsing.

In last week’s commentary New England Journal of Medicine The IOC’s decision to host the Olympics was “not informed by the best scientific evidence,” he said. British Medical Journal In an April editorial, asked the organizers to “reconsider” hosting the game.

The online petition for cancellation received about 400,000 signatures in a few weeks, but some street demonstrations have almost subsided. Depending on the question, 50-80% started the game. I disagree with.

SUGA moves forward while having conflicts.

“The fundamental situation is that machines have begun to move to achieve this, and we have passed a politically irreparable point for everyone,” said Aki, who teaches international affairs at the University of Tsukuba.・ Dr. Tonami wrote by e-mail. To AP.

“The Japanese system does not consider making a radical U-turn at such a late time.”

She attributed some of the negative public opinion to Mr. Suga, who was unable to strengthen the Olympics as effectively as former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

“Politicians may be aware of the risks they are taking, but when the Olympics begin, the Japanese public is patient’for Japan’and how we are here. I hope you will forget if you came. “

The IOC always refers to the World Health Organization as a shield for coronavirus guidance. The IOC has published two editions of the so-called playbook (the final edition will be published this month). It details the protocols for athletes and other people during the Olympics.

Recent test events held under the protocol face few problems, but athletes must accept strict rules.

American sprinter Justin Gatlin said at a test event in Tokyo last month: “I know many athletes aren’t happy with this, but steps have been taken to keep everyone safe.”

Japan has experienced far fewer cases of COVID-19 than the United States, Brazil and India. Cases have increased in the last few months, but concerns about variants continue, but have begun to decline in recent weeks.

Athletes and others are required to pass the COVID-19 test twice before returning to Japan and once when they arrive in Japan, and then undergo repeated tests. Approximately 15,000 Olympic and Paralympic athletes and additional staff will live in the bubble of the Olympic Village, training sites and venues.

Tens of thousands of people, including judges, media, broadcasters, the so-called Olympic family, must enter Japan, which was largely blocked during the pandemic. According to local organizers, that number is now 50% of the original 180,000. Foreign fans have already been banned, and local fans are expected to be decided later this month.

The IOC further states that 80% of the residents of the Olympic village will be vaccinated. This is comparable to 2-3% of the fully vaccinated population of Japan. Most Japanese are not vaccinated at the beginning of the match.

Japan gave 200 Olympic athletes shots on Tuesday. The event took place in a closed room with little fanfare.

Despite the guarantee that the Olympics will be “safe and secure,” athletes must sign a waiver and take the risks inherent in COVID-19.

Waivers were used in previous Olympics, but this has been updated with the COVID wording.

AP has obtained a copy of the waiver, including some of it.

“I agree to participate in the game at my own risk and responsibility. This may result in participation in the game and / or performance impact, serious physical injury, or health hazard. It even includes deaths from potential exposure. COVID-19 and other infectious diseases during the competition, or extreme heat … “

Bob Costas, who was in charge of the Olympics at NBC, suggested in a recent US television interview that the Olympics should be postponed until next year.

The IOC states that the Olympics must either be held this year or not. The postponement already costs $ 2.8 billion and another major obstacle to the postponement is the Olympic Village. Thousands of apartments have already been sold and owners are waiting to move in. Sports schedules readjusted need to do it.

David Wallechinsky, one of the world’s most famous Olympic historians and author of The Complete Book of the Olympics, summarized the situation by email to the Associated Press.

“What a hell,” he wrote.

Pandemic, despite opposition, the Tokyo Olympics are still being held

Source link Pandemic, despite opposition, the Tokyo Olympics are still being held

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