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Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Fidel on the Olympics

Fidel Castro's latest article discusses the Olympics and sports in general. The only part of the article which merited the attention of the Western corporate media was his defense of the Cuban taekwando athlete who was disqualified for kicking a referee. But, strangely enough, this kind of analysis didn't get mentioned:
If one calculates the total number of people living in India, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Vietnam, the Philippines and other countries, not to mention the world's nearly 900 million Africans and more than 550 million Latin Americans, one will have an idea of the number of people around the world who have no access to these kinds of sport facilities.

It is in this light that we ought to analyze the news that surrounded the Olympic Games in Beijing.

The world enjoyed the Olympics because it was something it needed, because we wanted to see the smiles and emotions of the athletes who participated, particularly those who came in first place, whose perseverance and discipline were duly acknowledged.

Which one of them could be blamed for the colossal inequalities that exist in the world in which it is our lot to live? How can one forget, on the other hand, the hunger, malnutrition, lack of schools, teachers, hospitals, doctors, medications and basic means of sustenance that the world endures?
Let us be serious about this. Let us go over every discipline, every human and material resource we devote to sports. We must analyze this deeply, apply new ideas, concepts and knowledge. We must distinguish between what is done for the sake of our citizens’ health and what is done for the sake of competing and making this instrument more accessible for the wellbeing and health of everyone.

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