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Beijing Olympic Boycott
News Bytes 12/8/2021 12 Comments

The United States is planning a diplomatic boycott of the upcoming Winter Olympics in Beijing. The action is meant to protest Chinese human rights abuses. Now China is vowing to engage in “firm countermeasures.”

The dispatching of high-level delegations to each Olympics is a long-time tradition for the United States and other nations. But with the February 2022 Winter Games set to take place in People’s Republic of China (PRC), U.S. dignitaries will be staying home.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki says U.S. athletes will continue to compete and “have our full support.” But, she adds, “We will not be contributing to the fanfare of the games” in China.

“U.S. diplomatic or official representation would treat these games as business as usual in the face of the PRC’s egregious human rights abuses and atrocities in Xinjiang,” Psaki told reporters on Monday, “and we simply can’t do that.”

Australia is dealing with a number of disputes with China too. Officials there have also raised the possibility of a diplomatic boycott.

American officials, including President Joe Biden, have criticized Beijing for human rights abuses against China’s Uyghur minority, suppression of democratic protests in Hong Kong, military aggression in Taiwan, and more.

Americans can be thankful to live in a country that still defends many types of human rights—and speaks out about them. “Open your mouth,” says Proverbs 31:9, “judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.”

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez calls the diplomatic Olympic boycott “a necessary step to demonstrate our unwavering commitment to human rights in the face of the Chinese government’s unconscionable abuses.”

Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, however, calls the action a “half measure.” He says, “The United States should fully boycott the Genocide Games in Beijing.” Cotton believes that “American businesses should not financially support the Chinese Communist Party, and we must not expose Team USA to the dangers of a repugnant authoritarian regime.”

Olympic boycotts aren’t unheard of. In 1980, President Jimmy Carter kept U.S. athletes home from the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow to protest the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Sixty-five other countries boycotted the games that year as well. At the next Olympics in 1984, 18 mostly Communist regimes boycotted the summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

Psaki has not said whether President Biden ever considered pulling athletes from the games. “I don’t think that we felt it was the right step to penalize athletes who have been training and preparing for this moment,” Psaki says. “We felt that we could send a clear message by not sending an official U.S. delegation.”

Human rights advocates and lawmakers in the United States say a boycott is a necessary step. They maintain China is using the games to whitewash its ill treatment of civil rights activists, political dissidents, and ethnic minorities.

The International Olympic Committee calls the decision to keep dignitaries away from the games a “political decision for each government” that it “fully respects.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian labels the U.S. move an “outright political provocation” and accuses U.S. politicians of grandstanding. “American politicians keep hyping the so-called diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics,” Zhao says. “If the U.S. side is bent on going its own way, China will take firm countermeasures.”

(A visitor to the Shougang Park walks past a sculpture for the Beijing Winter Olympics in Beijing, China, on November 9, 2021. AP/Ng Han Guan)

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Most recent comments

1st comment

Wow . . . Y wont they??


honestly... what does the US officials even do? from what china said in the article means this will probably just make things worse.


i meant what does the US officials not being there even do

Man, we showed them! That'll

Man, we showed them! That'll teach China for sure! Gotta hand it to Biden, he's got everything in (China's) hand.

5th comment

I think that it is good they are doing this. But I do want them to let the athletes go, because if I were an athlete and had been training so hard for so many years, I would be very angry and sad if I had to miss the games.


The one time they mention anything to do with Arkansas it has to do with our dumb warmonger senator. 8(
@Amari- Yeah, it probably will just make it worse, but America is sending China a message by doing this. America is standing up for people's rights, which is all well and good in itself, buuuuuut....
Why do we even care about China's opinion??? If we had just stuck to GEORGE WASHINGTON'S plan of staying neutral and minding our own business, we wouldn't be relying on China for necessary things and this wouldn't be something to worry about past the possibility of war.

8th and hey I'm back hi

I don't honestly think China cares, but it is good to stand up for people's rights. I'm glad they aren't keeping the athletes back. I hate when a soccer game gets rained out so I would totally feel for them if they weren't allowed to go. @ Amari I think the delegation is more for show and doesn't do much. Perhaps they're in charge of the athlete's housing etc.? I think their benefit is purely cosmetic, though. @ Everyone: Prayer request: My family has COVID including my grandma (and me, but I feel not sick at all, it just stinks being stuck at home) who had a heart attack last year. Please pray that she doesn't fell worse and everybody else stays in their current state of not feeling bad. Thanks!

y oh y

how do you guys get on here so fast good grief, ima never first, lol


Yeah I will pray! My family had covid over Thanksgiving, and we are just finishing up getting better from it! I didn't have it very bad, just a bad headache and eye ache the first day, and then a sore back for the next two days, and then a little congestion. My mom got it the worst, she was on the couch for about a week! But yes I hope your grandma gets better! My great-grandma is in the hospital right now. :(

@Elisha N

Well, it depends on where you live, because of different time zones, but if you got up in the middle of the night right after midnight, you MIGHT get first comment if it is that big of a deal. But remember, only MIGHT. There have been people who live in England, and I think someone from Africa, and other places have been here before, and because of where they live they have a better advantage of first comment. ;)


I will pray for y'all.
When we had covid, it wasn't too bad. I didn't feel bad at all and my dad laid in bed for a couple of days, but he was just tired. Hopefully your grandma will pull through all right!
@Riley- I will pray for your great-grandma. I hope she gets better or at least is granted peace of mind.

It's like our government


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