German IOC President Thomas Bach’s positive summary of the Winter Olympics in Beijing could not hide the troubles behind the scenes over the past weeks. The diplomatic boycott by numerous democratic nations overshadowed the idea of a peaceful time-out for the world. Hardly anything of what constitutes the Olympic idea had a chance to unfold during the Covid pandemic. The sterile atmosphere of the Games, characterized by distance and isolation, was emblematic of the host country’s cold relationship with large parts of the Western world.
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