Beijing Olympic Winter Games protests & politics thread

Sylvia

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Excerpts:
But the international outcry over human rights abuses in China, leading to a U.S. diplomatic boycott, has put extra scrutiny on how the network covers the Games, starting with the telecast of the opening ceremonies on February 4, with Mike Tirico hosting from Beijing and Today‘s Savannah Guthrie in the states.
Human rights groups already have called on NBC and other broadcasters to drop plans to carry the Games, and while that was never a likely prospect, network executives said this week they will add two China experts: Andy Browne, former China editor at the Wall Street Journal and now editorial director of Bloomberg New Economy, as well as Jing Tsu, a cultural historian who is Yale professor of China studies.
NBCUniversal is in the midst of a $7.75 billion deal with the International Olympic Committee for rights to air the Games through 2032. On a Ricochet podcast last month, Costas noted how unlikely it would have been for NBC to drop the Games, given the huge investment and because it is one of the few big events left that cuts across demographic segments.
Costas acknowledged that there is a “diplomatic aspect” to being an Olympics broadcaster in a host country, but international situations still cannot be ignored. He said that if he were still hosting, he would be mindful that “you’re not trying to stir the pot. You’ve got friends and colleagues there, and who knows what the Chinese might do to make their lives difficult or uncomfortable. But, as skillfully as I could, I would try to make sure that we did not turn a blind eye to that very large elephant in the room.”
 

caseyedwards

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Everyone saw how nbc treated China before. Lovingly! They bashed Russia non stop but treat China lovingly and everyone knows why. Right now there are probably recorded things about how amazing Xi is and when they air after backlash they will say “we don’t know how that got passed the editorial process!!!” Costas is a hypocite! He bashed Russia non stop but now says there needs to be diplomacy? There was none for Russia or Putin. China runs the world!

Remember all the stuff about gay rights before Sochi? None of that before Beijing where it’s worse than Russia
“China has banned showing homosexual relationships on public television, as well as showing "effeminate" men in general”

Never hear of this
 
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skatingguy

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Everyone saw how nbc treated China before. Lovingly! They bashed Russia non stop but treat China lovingly and everyone knows why. Right now there are probably recorded things about how amazing Xi is and when they air after backlash they will say “we don’t know how that got passed the editorial process!!!” Costas is a hypocite! He bashed Russia non stop but now says there needs to be diplomacy? There was none for Russia or Putin. China runs the world!

Remember all the stuff about gay rights before Sochi? None of that before Beijing where it’s worse than Russia
“China has banned showing homosexual relationships on public television, as well as showing "effeminate" men in general”

Never hear of this
It's not a competition. There's plenty of criticism to go around.
 

Sylvia

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NY Times (Jan. 22):
Excerpt:
Very few people today harbor illusions, unlike in 2008, that the privilege of hosting the event will moderate the country’s authoritarian policies. China then sought to meet the world’s terms. Now the world must accept China’s.
“They don’t need this to legitimize their rule,” said Xu Guoqi, a historian at the University of Hong Kong and author of “Olympic Dreams: China and Sports, 1895-2008.” “And they don’t need to please the whole world to make the event a big success.”
The I.O.C., like international corporations and entire countries, has become so dependent on China and its huge market that few can, or dare to, speak up against the direction Mr. Xi is taking the country.
China’s critics, activists for human and labor rights and others have accused the committee of failing to press Mr. Xi to change the country’s increasingly authoritarian policies. However, that presumes the committee has leverage to use.
 
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Sylvia

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Posted by @danceallnight in GSD - I did a search and have included related links below:
An international journalists' group a few months ago filed a grievance with the IOC about all the roadblocks they had encountered trying to interview athletes in China and how they had been stalked and followed whenever they brought out a camera. A whole list of people having difficulties doing the job in China - months before the Games start.
International Federation of Journalists' November 5th, 2021 press release:

Committee to Protect Journalists piece (Jan. 11):

ETA: https://www.androidcentral.com/us-wants-athletes-use-burner-phones-beijing-winter-olympics
The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee has advised athletes to use burner phones and laptops during the Winter Olympics in Beijing next month. Similar advisories have also been issued by National Olympic Committees in Canada, the Netherlands, and the UK (via The Wall Street Journal).
The warning was sent to American athletes in September last year and again in a bulletin in December. The bulletin recommended athletes leave their phones and laptops at home to avoid possible surveillance during the Games.
In an advisory sent to athletes, the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee said:
It should be assumed that every text, email, online visit, and application access can be monitored or compromised. Your device(s) may also be compromised with malicious software, which could negatively impact future use.

Deutsche Welle article (Jan. 18):
Athletes headed to the Beijing Olympic Winter Games are making final travel preparations, including keeping in line with China's health measures on the My 2022 smartphone app.
Inadequate encryption measures within the app can leave Olympians, journalists and sports officials vulnerable to hackers, privacy breaches and surveillance, according to a cybersecurity report by Citizen Lab obtained exclusively by DW.
Additionally, the IT forensic specialists found that the app includes a censorship keyword list.
Citizen Lab researchers also found a text file in the app called "illegalwords.txt." It contains 2,442 keywords and phrases, is mainly written in simplified Chinese (which is used in the People's Republic of China) — but a small portion of the words are also in Uyghur, Tibetan, traditional Chinese (used in Hong Kong and Taiwan) and English.
Among the many keywords are some profanities, but also expressions that reference politically taboo topics in China, which are censored by the state, including criticism of the Chinese Communist Party and its leaders, as well as keywords related to Falun Gong, the Tiananmen protests, the Dalai Lama and the Uyghur Muslim minority in China's Xinjiang region. One example on the list, which Citizen Lab reviewed, is the term "Holy Quran" in the Uyghur language.
Citizen Lab, which has significant expertise in app-security analysis, says there was no indication in the current version of the app that this keyword list is being actively used for censorship. It was not immediately clear why the keyword list is present in the app. But researcher Knockel says, "Even though 'illegalwords.txt' isn't being used currently, My2022 already contains code functions which are capable of reading this file and applying it toward censorship, so activating the list's censorship would require little effort."
The app also contains a reporting function that allows users to report other users if they consider a chat message to be dangerous or dubious. Among the possible reasons for reporting is the option "politically sensitive content," a phrase that is typically used in China to describe censored topics.
 
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Sylvia

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Russian President Vladimir Putin is a confirmed guest at the opening ceremony, while European representatives will include those from Poland, Serbia, Luxembourg and Monaco.
Also present will be dignitaries from Cambodia, Singapore, the five Central Asian nations, Mongolia, Pakistan, Argentina, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, according to an updated guest list released by state broadcaster CCTV on Friday.
Some heads of state deemed controversial in the West are on the guest list, including Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia.
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the president of Kazakhstan who has just survived violent unrest in what he called an "attempted coup", will be among the attendees. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, UN General Assembly president Abdulla Shahid and World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus will also be among the spectators.
 

Sylvia

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Re-posting this Reuters article here in this thread:

Bobsledder Elana Meyers Taylor wrote that the best way she can send a message about the Olympic host nation, amid calls for various forms of boycotts, is to compete at the Beijing Games.
“I understand the concerns about human rights and free expression in China,” Meyers Taylor, a three-time medalist going to her fourth Games, wrote in an opinion piece for USA Today. “To go to Beijing and compete – as an American, a woman, a person of color and as a special needs parent – says more than any boycott could.”
Meyers Taylor, 37, has a unique perspective.
She has been part of the Olympic Movement since her debut at the 2010 Vancouver Games.
While competing at the top of her sport, she served as president of the Women’s Sports Foundation, interned at the IOC headquarters in Switzerland and earned an MBA in finance. She has called out racism and gender inequity in bobsled.
She flew to Beijing with her husband, U.S. Olympic bobsled alternate Nic Taylor, and their 1-year-old son, Nico, who was born with Down syndrome and profound bilateral sensorineural hearing loss.
 

Sylvia

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Re-posting and providing an update in this thread:
Team Taiwan won't be at Winter Olympics opening ceremony
Associated Press article (Feb. 1):
Olympic officials in Taiwan have reversed a decision to skip Friday’s opening ceremony of the Beijing Games, saying they were pressured to do so by the IOC.
Taiwanese athletes compete as Chinese Taipei at the Olympics as part of a decades-old agreement with China brokered by the International Olympic Committee. China claims the self-ruled island of Taiwan as its own territory and has an ongoing policy of diplomatic and military intimidation.
The IOC said Tuesday “the Chinese Taipei Olympic Committee has confirmed its participation” in opening and closing ceremonies at this year’s Winter Games. The statement did not address the Olympic body’s own role in the process.
Officials in Taiwan said the country would “adjust” its plan not to have an opening ceremony delegation in Beijing after repeated requests by the IOC to attend and fulfill obligations under the Olympic Charter.
 

Sylvia

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India’s foreign affairs spokesman Arindam Bagchi on Thursday said it was “regrettable that the Chinese side has chosen to politicize an event like the Olympics.”
The move followed reports in China’s state-owned Global Times that a Chinese military commander, who was involved in deadly clashes with Indian border forces in 2020, had been chosen as one of many torchbearers charged with relaying the Olympics flame to Beijing.
The 2020 fighting erupted along the disputed border with China in eastern Ladakh. Chinese troops killed 20 Indian soldiers, while China said it lost four soldiers.
The spokesman added that the Indian Embassy in Beijing would also not send a representative to the closing ceremonies.
Yalqun recalls being proud to participate in China’s first Olympics. Those feelings vanished after his father disappeared. In 2016, Yalqun Rozi, an editor of books on Uyghur literature, was arrested and sentenced to 15 years in prison for attempting to “subvert” the Chinese state.
Yalqun never saw his father again — only catching a glimpse of him in a Xinjiang documentary by state broadcaster CGTN five years later. Yalqun moved to the U.S. for graduate school in 2014 and has stayed ever since.
In the past months, Yalqun has regularly joined protests in Boston calling for the boycott of the Winter Games.
 

Vagabond

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For anyone who doesn't know, the avatar that @Vagabond, and I are using is the flag of First East Turkestan Republic (1933-34), and the unofficial flag of the Xinjiang Region of China. It is also a symbol used by Uyghur activists to protest the genocide being perpetrated by China against the Uyghur people.
 

skatingguy

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Moving these here because they don't have anything to do with Russian Women's skating thread.
"But if there was an 'international incident' no one will know because this isolated non-Chinese speaking person may not have internet access, has everything to loose and will not be able to access basic support in their own language. All it takes is one jerk."

Yes, I think you are very naive and gullible.

Edit to add, that this is my last post on this subject. I won't go back and forth on this because I have already expressed what I think about this topic.

What is with this need to convince us that the Chinese government is some sort of benevolent force that never does anything wrong? I don't agree with everything that has been posted in this forum about what might happen, but to try and gaslight us into believing that these sorts of things never happen in China is ridiculous. Foreigners working, and travelling in China have been arrested, and held by the government on flimsy excuses, and trumped up charges usually espionage.
 

soogar

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Everyone saw how nbc treated China before. Lovingly! They bashed Russia non stop but treat China lovingly and everyone knows why. Right now there are probably recorded things about how amazing Xi is and when they air after backlash they will say “we don’t know how that got passed the editorial process!!!” Costas is a hypocite! He bashed Russia non stop but now says there needs to be diplomacy? There was none for Russia or Putin. China runs the world!

Remember all the stuff about gay rights before Sochi? None of that before Beijing where it’s worse than Russia
“China has banned showing homosexual relationships on public television, as well as showing "effeminate" men in general”

Never hear of this
I was watching the pairs SP and there was so much gushing over Sui Han. They were good but not gush worthy. This happened before with other Chinese pairs. As long as they are close to Russian pairs, commentators will gush over them as if they are the second coming. As if China is any better than Russia. They put a blind eye on human rights violations and their cover up of the crud which the world is still dealing with, yet Russia is always the bad guy. It's the cold war but we forgot who the communists are.
 

Frau Muller

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Chinese security pushes Dutch reporter as he live-broadcasts for his country’s TV - while the show’s anchor in The Netherlands looks on flabbergasted! All of this occurring just outside the opening-ceremony venue. Story-

 
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BlueRidge

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I agree that highlighting the crimes against humanity being carried out by the Chinese government in Xinjiang is paramount but this column gets at additional issues of what the Beijing Games mean politically. Xi and his party (what the writer calls the party-state) are using the games to demonstrate the idea that authoritarian closed societies are superior to open societies. The message is first and foremost for the domestic audience but it is also to the world.

These Olympics, “closed loop” and all, are the perfect living showcase of Mr. Xi’s mechanisms for governance, built up over the past decade, and vision for the future.

The I.O.C. is in agreement with the Chinese government on this and sees these games as their Olympic ideal:

The International Olympic Committee appears to share the Chinese party-state’s desire for a controlled event free of televised controversy. I.O.C. officials have rebuffed attempts to discuss the moral or political implications of holding the Games in an authoritarian state, asserting time and again that sports and politics should not mix.

The IOC may be a small player on the world scene but for those who are stakeholders and fans of Olympic sports, the IOC matters and supporting the continuation of a body that is willing to make itself a mouthpiece for authoritarianism really should be brought into question.

These Games are not about showcasing China’s rapid growth or ascendance to near-superpower status; that’s nothing new. Instead, the Games are about spotlighting the party-state’s firm control at a time when so many other countries appear to be floundering politically.

We are in a global struggle over whether the human future will be one of open societies or closed authoritarian societies. These Olympics are a propaganda showcase for the latter.

And some folks may say well look at the worlds so-called democracies. Maybe putting up with some surveillance and government control isn't so bad.

That brings us back to Xinjiang and the cultural genocide against the Uyghurs. Closed societies that clamp down on dissent make such atrocities possible.

We can't afford such a human future.

The 2022 Olympics Are Already a Win for China (NY Times)
 

Kelvster

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I'm new to this discussion. Thank you for the insightful posts.

How do you guys feel about it all? I have been a huge fan of figure skating since 1994. On the one hand, there's one part of me saying that the Olympics is so important to the athletes ... and let's just support the athletes. On the other hand, there's this other aspect (can't even say too much ... let's just say ... many many ppl are in constant fear ...) :-(

So yeah, there's confusion, to say the least :-(
 

Sylvia

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Putting this Eileen Gu article here because it has a political aspect:
Excerpts:
Born in San Francisco to a Chinese mother and American father and raised by her mother and maternal grandmother, Gu announced in June 2019, at age 15, that she would switch country affiliations and compete for China in the Beijing Games. "This was an incredibly tough decision for me to make," Gu wrote in an Instagram post at the time. "The opportunity to help inspire millions of young people where my mom was born, during the 2022 Beijing Olympic Winter Games is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help to promote the sport I love. Through skiing, I hope to unite people, promote common understanding, create communication, and forge friendships between nations."
The announcement came as a surprise to many in the sport. It is rare for a top U.S. athlete to switch countries, and rarer still for a U.S. citizen to acquire a Chinese passport. Many questioned whether Gu, a high school sophomore at the time, understood the impact of her decision. She was called a traitor on social media and accused of making the choice for financial gain and allowing herself to be used as a political tool by the Chinese government.
Through her agent, Gu declined to comment for this story and has never confirmed whether she renounced her American passport. But the International Olympic Committee requires athletes to hold passports for the countries they represent, and China does not recognize dual citizenship.
Gu often says when she is "in the U.S., I'm American and when I'm in China, I'm Chinese." Now, she will drop into her first Winter Olympics at a fraught moment in U.S.-China relations and as China comes under increasing international criticism for its human rights practices. Deftly navigating her two worlds can be incredibly lucrative. But the stakes are high.
 

MacMadame

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I'm new to this discussion. Thank you for the insightful posts.

How do you guys feel about it all? I have been a huge fan of figure skating since 1994. On the one hand, there's one part of me saying that the Olympics is so important to the athletes ... and let's just support the athletes. On the other hand, there's this other aspect (can't even say too much ... let's just say ... many many ppl are in constant fear ...) :-(

So yeah, there's confusion, to say the least :-(
My plan was to only watch the figure skating and as much as possible on Peacock (because I want Peacock to survive). But after all the bitching about the opening ceremonies, I am also watching that so I can decide for myself about the controversial aspects.
 

MacMadame

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My plan was to only watch the figure skating and as much as possible on Peacock (because I want Peacock to survive). But after all the bitching about the opening ceremonies, I am also watching that so I can decide for myself about the controversial aspects.
Okay, I watched it and I have this to say:

There is nothing wrong with the USA uniforms. In fact, the only downright ugly ones were those all gray things from Finland. And Ireland's ski caps didn't go with the rest of their outfit which gave me death in my soul. I will refrain from speaking about the Italian ones. :lol:

I was actually nauseous during the Imagine number from how hypocritical it was. The speech from the Chinese LOC guy also stuck in my craw a bit.

The "cauldron" lighting was just eye-roll worthy mostly because, if the announcers hadn't said anything, I wouldn't have had any idea what China did. And, yeah, that fire was pitiful. Even when the camera zoomed in on the snowflake, you could barely see it.

So in the end, watching the Opening Ceremonies was both boring and anger-inducing.

In terms of politics and what these Olympics might encourage, I wonder how much positive vibes they are getting from any country that has had an athlete or two go through hell due to the PCR testing requirements and possibly even miss the games when they aren't even sick. I guess people who like authoritarianism wouldn't see it that way but to many countries, that part of the games has been a shitshow IMO.
 

BlueRidge

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I'm new to this discussion. Thank you for the insightful posts.

How do you guys feel about it all? I have been a huge fan of figure skating since 1994. On the one hand, there's one part of me saying that the Olympics is so important to the athletes ... and let's just support the athletes. On the other hand, there's this other aspect (can't even say too much ... let's just say ... many many ppl are in constant fear ...) :-(

So yeah, there's confusion, to say the least :-(
We are beyond the point where anything can be done about the Beijing Olympics. I considered not watching simply for my own conscience, but I love the skaters and they don't choose where the Olympics will be held and I support them.

The IOC will do this again. Maybe even in China, given that fewer and fewer places want to hold the Olympics. To me it is about stakeholders in the winter sports (I'm a winter Olys only person) unplugging the IOC. Right now its pretty clear there's no chance of that, but things could change. For one thing, the athletes should not be put in the position of choosing between their sporting efforts and having to be part of a front for a regime committing crimes against humanity. They simply have no power individually and asking them to give up what they work so hard for is putting the onus in the wrong place.

This is about the IOC and the sponsors and NBC and others with broadcast rights. But I also don't think its going to change any time soon.

Because it is part of a larger world picture of whether the kind of regime China has is going to be dominant going forward and corporations and other countries are going to go along to get along or not. I'm not optimistic.

Beyond the Olympics we are sitting here watching a cultural genocide happen in front of our eyes and we (I mean global humanity) have no idea what to do or if anything actually can be done. Its deeply dismaying.
 

Sylvia

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Putting this Eileen Gu article here because it has a political aspect:

:(
US-born figure skater Zhu Yi under attack after fall on Olympic debut for China (Feb. 6):
Excerpts:
Instead, the 19-year-old is facing a firestorm on Chinese social media after she fell flat on the ice and finished last in the women's short program team event Sunday.
On Weibo, China's Twitter-like platform, the hashtag "Zhu Yi has fallen" gained 200 million views in just a few hours. Many questioned why Zhu, an American-born skater, was picked to represent China at the expense of an athlete born in the country. [...]
By Sunday evening, the hashtag appeared to have been censored. It is unclear why.
Zhu is among at least a dozen foreign-born athletes recruited by China in recent years in an attempt to bolster its medal count at the Winter Olympics. But the attack against her also highlights the pressure these naturalized athletes face to compete under the Chinese flag.
Born in Los Angeles to a Chinese immigrant family, Zhu decided to compete for China in 2018 and gave up her American citizenship. She also changed her name from Beverly Zhu to Zhu Yi.
But she has faced criticism in China for not being able to speak fluent Chinese. [...]
Others have taken aim at her allegedly privileged background and family ties. Zhu's father, Zhu Songchun, is an award-winning artificial intelligence scientist. He joined Peking University from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2020.
The attack on Zhu stands in stark contrast to the huge popularity of California-born Eileen Gu, a freeskiing prodigy who is also competing for China.
The 18-year-old has charmed the Chinese public with her fluent Mandarin and familiarity with Chinese culture, having grown up spending summer holidays in Beijing. She has become China's unofficial face of the Winter Olympics, featuring heavily in state media coverage to promote winter sports, as well as advertisements for Chinese brands.
Gu is due to make her Olympic debut in the women's freeski big air qualifications on Monday morning. On Weibo, where Gu has 1.9 million followers, the hashtag "Eileen Gu's first show" is trending on Sunday night with more than 300 million views.
 

genegri

Active Member
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I'm new to this discussion. Thank you for the insightful posts.

How do you guys feel about it all? I have been a huge fan of figure skating since 1994. On the one hand, there's one part of me saying that the Olympics is so important to the athletes ... and let's just support the athletes. On the other hand, there's this other aspect (can't even say too much ... let's just say ... many many ppl are in constant fear ...) :-(

So yeah, there's confusion, to say the least :-(

I am fully supportive and thoroughly enjoying the games, so are my dad and stepmother who now live in Beijing, so are my step brother and his wife who is from Xinjiang.
 

Sylvia

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Excerpts:
In recent days, however, the outpouring of adulation for Gu on the Chinese internet has been tempered somewhat by a small current of discontent. Some social media users are criticizing her for being unaware of her privileged status after comments she made about internet freedom in China.
It began when a user commented on one of Gu’s Instagram posts before she won the gold medal in the women’s freeski big air event last week.
“Why can you use Instagram and millions of Chinese people from mainland cannot,” the commenter wrote, according to a screenshot of the since-deleted exchange. The user went on to question why Gu received “special treatment” compared with other Chinese citizens.
“That’s not fair, can you speak up for those millions of Chinese who don’t have internet freedom,” the user added.
“Anyone can download a VPN,” Gu replied, according to the screenshot. “It’s literally free on the App Store.” […]
Within days, a screenshot of the Instagram exchange was circulating on Chinese social media. While some people praised Gu for her combativeness, others lashed out at her for being out of touch with the struggle of ordinary Chinese citizens.
“Literally, I’m not ‘anyone,’” one user wrote. “Literally, it is illegal for me to use a VPN.”
The fervent discussion of Gu’s personal life in recent days has also spurred broader discussions about persistent social inequality in China. Several articles suggesting that the Chinese government granted an exception to its prohibition on dual nationality, allowing Gu to keep her U.S. passport, have been censored in recent days. (Gu has declined to answer repeated questions about her nationality.)
In one viral article, a writer drew a comparison between Gu and a woman in southern China who appeared in a recent widely circulated video chained by the neck inside a shed. Since it emerged last month, the video has sparked public anger toward the Chinese authorities for their failure to protect vulnerable women.
“The systemic challenges and structural shackles that Chinese women face have not changed,” the author’s article wrote. “The reality is that the vast majority of women have no chance to become Eileen Gu.”
In recent days, Chinese censors stepped in to block that article, too.
 

Sylvia

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Inside The Games' Duncan Mackay:
https://twitter.com/duncan_itg/status/1494187466806472708
I've been covering #Olympics for 30 years and have attended hundreds of these events. I've never seen anything so remarkable and jaw-dropping. In the space of 20 minutes, she exposed the lie about the Olympics being "politically neutral". What a huge embarrassment for the IOC.
Beijing 2022 spokesperson Yan Jiarong dismissed claims of human rights violations in Xinjiang as "lies" and insisted Taiwan was part of China during a remarkable daily press conference here today.
At the end of the briefing, Yan confirmed today was the final joint press conference with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) - and she made sure she left having made quite an impression.
The official took the opportunity go on the offensive on a series of controversial issues surrounding the Games having largely been quiet in the early part of the Games.
Yan intervened on three occasions following responses to questions on Taiwan and human rights violations of the Uyghur population in Xinjiang.
Associated Press:
In the final regularly scheduled briefing before the Games close on Sunday, Yan and IOC spokesman Mark Adams were peppered with questions about Taiwan, Xinjiang and the safety of Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai.
Following up on a question about Taiwan’s reported attempt to skip the opening ceremony, Yan asked for extra time to address the status of the self-governing island, which China views as its sovereign territory.
“Mark, could I just make some supplementary remarks?” Yan said, continuing: “Taiwan is an indivisible part of China and this is a well recognized international principle and well recognized in the international community,” she said. “We are always against the idea of politicizing the Olympic Games.”
She (Yan) spoke up at this point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmxSYLJ7JWM&t=1195s
Adams was immediately questioned by a non-Chinese reporter who suggested that Yan, herself, had “politicized” the Games by raising China’s stance on Taiwan. Adams dodged the question.
“There are views on all sorts of things around the world, but our job is to make sure that the Games take place,” Adams said.
 
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Sylvia

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Post-Olympics news in the U.S. today that mentions Alysa Liu’s father was targeted - Justice Department accuses Chinese agents of trying to intimidate critics in the U.S. (March 16, 2022):
Relevant excerpt:
Among the targets of the Chinese efforts was Arthur Liu, a lawyer and political activist in the San Francisco Bay area. He is the father of an Olympic figure skater, Alysa Liu. When he lived in China, he helped organize pro-democracy demonstrations.
His daughter has credited him with supporting and encouraging her. “He just helps me so much,” she told NBC News during the Olympic games.
ETA what I just posted in the thread that was just started in GSD:

Arthur Liu led pro-democracy demonstrations in Guangzhou (where he was a university student at the time) in 1989 before he managed to get out of China and make his way to the USA.

ETA #2 to include a 3/16/22 NYT online article excerpt that @GarrAargHrumph posted in the GSD thread:
Prosecutors also said that in late 2021 Mr. Ziburis posed as a member of an international sports committee to gain access to a California-based dissident’s home. That dissident, a person familiar with the case said, is Bay Area lawyer Arthur Liu, the father of U.S. figure skater Alysa Liu.
In a November 2021 report to Mr. Liu quoted in the complaint, Mr. Ziburis described going to Arthur Liu’s house in the Bay Area, and asked to check the family’s passports to ensure he and an unnamed family member were set for international travel. He described Mr. Liu growing angry and telling him to leave.

I’ve started a general thread here in PI on China & related political issues:
 
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Sylvia

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Scary! Associated Press article U.S. Olympian Alysa Liu, father targeted in Chinese spy case by Sally Ho (March 17, 2022):
Excerpts:
Arthur Liu told The Associated Press he had been contacted by the FBI last October, and warned about the scheme just as his 16-year-old daughter was preparing for the Winter Olympics that took place in Beijing in February. The father said he did not tell his daughter about the issue so as not to scare her or distract her from the competition.
“We believed Alysa had a very good chance of making the Olympic team and truly were very scared,” Arthur Liu said late Wednesday.
But through the spying investigation, he learned that China was aware of an Instagram message about human rights violations against the ethnic minority Uyghurs that his daughter once posted. During the Games, Alysa Liu also told her father that she was approached by a stranger late one night at a cafeteria after the free skate event, and that the man followed her and asked her to come to his apartment.
“I’ve kind of accepted my life to be like this because of what I chose to do in 1989, to speak up against the government. And I know the Chinese government will extend their long hands into any corner in the world,” Arthur Liu said. “I’m going to continue to enjoy life and live life as I want to live. I’m not going to let this push me down and I’m not going to let them succeed.”
:respec:
 

Sylvia

Rooting for underdogs!
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