Sport, Nuclear and Security

Russia’s anger against the U.S. is not as trivial, or as unjustified, as it may seem. The arrest on Wednesday of fourteen heads or partners of FIFA for corruption by Swiss police at the request of the U.S. justice department could, in retrospect, have unpleasant consequences on the football World Cups in 2018 (in Russia) and 2022 (in Qatar). Consequently, Russian President Vladimir Putin, worried by the after-effects that could come from this affair and very angry with Washington, accused the U.S. on Thursday of wanting to prevent Russia from hosting the 2018 World Cup. In fact, Putin’s apprehension is far from being a flight of fancy, if we cite as proof the West’s attempts to have cancelled, or otherwise make fail, the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi (in Russia) in retaliation against Moscow’s alleged interference in the Ukraine conflict.

And yet, the West’s intimidation and pressure on Russia are nothing new, and directly form part of tactics that have been used before, particularly by the U.S., to impose its diktat. Let’s think back to the 1980 boycott by the U.S. and other Western countries of the Moscow Olympic Games, and let’s look at the categorical way in which Washington used its veto to oppose the re-election of two Egyptian U.N. leaders: Mohamed ElBaradei as head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (the U.N. agency’s Director General was accused [by the West] of having withheld important information about Iran’s nuclear program), and Boutros Boutros-Ghali as Secretary General of the U.N. (who, in a lengthy report, had the audacity to prove Israel’s complete and sole responsibility for a war crime: the 1996 massacre of around 100 children from the village of Qana, taking refuge in a United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon camp).

We can see, then, that Washington will stop at nothing to impose its rules and its view of things. In fact, Washington, which has a list of countries to put under surveillance, is holding the carrot in one hand and the stick in the other. The U.S. actually acts like a world government, sanctioning this and rewarding that. Thus, whether directly or underhandedly, the U.S. has always tended to eliminate those men, countries, organizations and/or institutions that stand up to it and/or act as an obstacle to its control over things and facts, such as control over countries and international organizations.

This is particularly true for hot issues like the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (U.N.), Iran’s nuclear program (IAEA), or the recent case of Ukraine (the U.S. accusing Russia of destabilizing the country), which Washington has made its priority and on which it wants to maintain the upper hand. The U.S. has subsequently allowed itself every ruling in order to reach its ends. Thus while ensuring Israel’s impunity for its crimes against the Palestinians — by removing its nuclear obligations, for example — Washington is nonetheless quick to sanction any state, politician, country or organization that oversteps the “red lines” that it sets for others. It has therefore economically and financially sanctioned Iran and Russia in particular, countries that proved themselves not easily influenced. And the U.S. has gone further. Didn’t it spy on Western leaders (such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the NSA scandal denounced by Edward Snowden) and allied European countries?

So, to once again carry off the coup of 1980 — the Western boycott of the Moscow Olympic Games — and to take away the hosting of the 2018 World Cup from Russia is not as unusual as one would like to make believe. And, as the Russian president pertinently emphasizes, by involving itself in the FIFA corruption scandal, the American justice department is de facto giving itself the right of extraterritoriality — an International Criminal Court Mark 2 — while Washington moves (and has moved) heaven and earth to ensure its own citizens escape national and international jurisdictions. In the case of the International Criminal Court, which came into force in 2002, the U.S. has signed a series of conventions with third-party countries to ensure impunity for its citizens — perpetrators or those suspected of war crimes against humanity or genocide — so that they are not sent before the ICC The U.S. [and Israel] are among those few countries neither having signed nor ratified the Rome Statute on which the ICC was founded.

Already the world’s police, the U.S. seems to have entered a new stage by assuming a right to police and render justice throughout the world. All earthlings are thus subject to justice in Washington’s eyes, except Americans and Israelis. Should we be surprised when the emasculated U.N. becomes nothing more than a sounding board for the powerful?

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