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Sam asked in SportsOlympics · 4 years ago

Did you see the 60 mins special on the russian olympian drug program?

Where they said their track athletes have been cheating on drug programs for years in the olympics that goes to the highest levels in their government?

I think everyone knew they had cheaters but I dont think anyone knew it was to that extent where they were all doing it.

3 Answers

  • 4 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    I saw it. I was glad they put Armen Keteyian on the story because he has a deep sports journalism background.

    I think the significance of the story, first reported by a German 60 Minutes-type program, is evidence of systematic doping. This wasn't one or two athletes looking for an edge on their own. This was about all the athletes being forced to take them.

    What was fascinating was the Russia didn't deny it the story. Putin has ordered the practice to end. (I don't know if he was winking as he said it.) No doubt to Putin, the crime wasn't the doping but that they were caught. Remember, it took an insider years to gather evidence. The informant is now out of Russia and they'll now tighten their controls. Russia's next doping scandal will be nearly impossible to crack.

    Despite Russia's mea culpa, its track & field team should be banned from the upcoming Rio Olympics. Allowing them condones systematic cheating.

  • 4 years ago

    I didn't see the segment, but if you are over the age of about 30, you'll remember this was common practice in all of the countries of the USSR. The influence of the Kremlin on all things sports and culture goes back to the Communist days where the national identity (national isn't the right word, state may be better) is closely intertwined with portraying the citizen as a hero working for the state (and by extension, all other citizens). Sports, media, music, information and all communications were tightly controlled to ensure that the image of the heroic, dedicated perfect citizen was the ideal. Athletes, because they symbolize strength (as well as members of the Opera and a few other areas) hold a special place in the propaganda machine. During Stalin's reign, people who lost at international events could be sent to prison, and that could be a death sentence. Putin is an old KGB man, and the idea of controlling the outcome to make the state look good in the eyes of its own citizens will not die easily, even a generation or two after the fall of the USSR.

  • 4 years ago

    Today the IAAF and the IOC is finally admitting the Soviet bloc nations are and always have been cheats.

    There was talk of banning the Russian team for the 2016, Olympics but I doubt it will happen, in the most recent World Cup race walking the winner just returned from a 4 year ban and yes he is Russian.

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