The Sniper's Guide to the Bird's Nest
Continued from page 3
Looking very happy is the senior member whose first-class, long-haul flights to have sex with his girlfriend are paid for by the IOC. She’s here. Not so active now is the ageing member known to women employed by Olympic bidding cities as Mr Wandering Hands. Their complaints were ignored by Lausanne.
The two French members, one a former bag-carrier to Jacques Chirac and the other his country’s Olympic leader who gave Olympic contracts to his wife think themselves lucky to be here. One escaped jail with a presidential amnesty, the other had his three months suspended. The forgiving IOC ethics body asked them not to do it again. The same penalty is imposed on Korea’s Yong Sung Park for embezzling $30 million. Samsung boss Kun Hee Lee is currently having some difficulties back home with revelations of a multi-million dollar slush fund much enjoyed by presidents and politicians. That doesn’t trouble the committee – Samsung’s a major sponsor.
IN ONE of the most comfortable seats is friendly Jeff Immelt. They like Jeff because he’s paying a lot towards the cost of the sacred spectacle. He’s the super-boss of the General Electric conglomerate who can afford to sponsor the Olympic brand because GE Money has made a killing out of sub-prime mortgages.
GE also own the NBC-TV network that interprets the sacred games to America. They also have their own IOC member, Alex Gilady. Jeff may privately be unhappy about the IOC’s calls for an Olympic Truce during the event. They make the engines for many of the warplanes doing a lot of killing in Iraq; a truce would be bad for business.
IN MAY last year the peaceniks gathered at Ancient Olympia to rescue a troubled world with their Olympic Truce. How to achieve this? They resolved to ‘Pursue a close relationship with the International Military Sports Council.’
This was followed in October with a resolution at the UN entitled ‘Building a peaceful and better world through sport and the Olympic ideal.’ It was promoted by China.
On February 8 this year, in total secrecy, President Rogge picked up his white Peace Phone – it’s shaped like a sacred dove - and contacted ‘the protagonists of the main internal and international conflicts to ask them to apply the Olympic Truce for the duration of the Games.’ There’s been zero publicity or leaks – so you might ask, how do I know?
Item 41.1 of the long forgotten ‘50 Stunning reforms’ adopted by the IOC in December 1999 in the aftermath of the Salt Lake fiasco required the president to do this six months before the sacred sport began. Has Rogge done it?
No time to answer that, here’s the president! The sacred Jacque Rogge walks to the podium at the heart of the Bird’s Nest. A man with sparkling teeth, floppy hair and the most charming of smiles, he’s risen without trace to our front pages. He’s all the IOC could want; collegial. That’s all. They’ve got the copyright on one of the most valuable sports franchises in the world and their singular desire is to keep it and the moolah for themselves.
I know what he is going to say. Item number 41.2 requires, ‘During the Opening Ceremony, the President will refer to the actions being carried out by the IOC for the Olympic Truce and will note that the Truce is above all a first step in the direction of lasting peace.’
Stop laughing at the back! This is serious and I have a gun.
Item 41 states: ‘The IOC will decide on a symbolic gesture during the opening ceremony to highlight the existence of, and need for, the Olympic Truce.’