The History Of Olympic Protest

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The History Of Olympic Protest

Post by Admin on Wed Sep 23, 2009 5:16 pm

The History Of Olympic Protest
By: livebeijingupdates

The recent Olympic protests in London, Paris and San Francisco are juvenile if compared with the great history of Greece where people really knew how to disturb the games.

Today when we talk history we get reminded of the greatness that the athletes and states of Greece possessed, which rose above politics and rivalry in sports. The Greeks used to have a sacred truce in between the states to permit spectators and athletes to participate in the games. But such armistices were continuously torn by the armies and states.

The Olympia arena was stormed by soldiers in 364 BC and there was a battle on the field. It is still the history’s biggest clash in which sports became the frontrunner in politics. According to Xenophon, the traditional hosts of Olympics Elians were overthrown by the neighboring Pisans and their allies Arcadians. They invaded the games at the height when the Greeks were caught up in a great wrestling match. The Elians, Pisans and Arcadians had a hand to hand combat in the sacred sanctuary of Olympia.

The two armies didnt harm the spectators as they impartially applauded the clash between the forces from the sidelines. Despite being forced to withdraw, Elians managed to organize the next Olympics under their control. The Athenians refused to participate in 380 BC games when one of their athletes was wedged in a corruption scandal. In 420 BC, during the time of Peloponnesian War, the Spartans were not allowed to attend the Olympics.

Twenty years later, the great Spartans found themselves again in trouble when they broke the sacred truce and were fined a Mina per solider, which amounts to US$ 5 million of today. The Olympics found itself in the driving seat of politics not only in times of war, but also when there was relative peace between the states. In 388 BC, Lysias (an orator) degraded Dionysis of Syracuse. Fans that came to see the games went wild after the comments and sabotaged the kings tent.

Considering the present situations, the ancient games were far more peaceful and were held consistently for more than 10 centuries. The modern Olympics which started in April 1896 has been cancelled thrice (in 1916, 1940, and 1944) due to the world wars, and the arena also witnessed the bloodbath of Munich Massacre in 1972.

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