Russian team will compete in the Olympics

Monday, 25 July, 2016 - 13:00

- The International Olympic Committee Executive Board has just made public via twitter and through their main website that they have ruled against a blanket ban on Russian athletes from competing in the upcoming 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The IOC released today:

The IOC Executive Board (EB) has today further studied the question of the participation of Russian athletes in the Olympic Games Rio 2016. In its deliberations, the IOC EB was guided by a fundamental rule of the Olympic Charter to protect clean athletes and the integrity of sport.


He further stated that all Russian athletes selected for the Olympic Games Rio 2016 have been tested over the last six months by foreign anti-doping agencies. Samples were taken by foreign doping control officers and the samples analysed in foreign laboratories. Russian athletes who participated in different competitions in all sports have submitted more than 3,000 doping samples. The vast majority of the results were negative.The IOC EB discussed the status of the ROC. In this respect, it took note of the fact that the IP Report made no findings against the ROC as an institution.

What was also significant was;

While it is true that Mrs Stepanova’s testimony and public statements have made a contribution to the protection and promotion of clean athletes, fair play and the integrity and authenticity of sport, the Rules of the Olympic Charter related to the organisation of the Olympic Games run counter to the recognition of the status of neutral athlete. Furthermore, the sanction to which she was subject and the circumstances in which she denounced the doping practices which she had used herself, do not satisfy the ethical requirements for an athlete to enter the Olympic Games.

What is and what is considered doping changes from year to year, as part of the Olympics 'competition' is also a pharmaceutical one: who can dope using methods that aren't yet considered doping. Designer drugs are part of this competition itself. Most athletes by and large are likely to be unaware that they are doping.

National teams from time to time may take an under-performing athlete and 'throw them to the lions', sacrificing them on the altar of diligence and transparency. They may use a known older doping method which is easier to detect, to demonstrate to the IOC two things: that they are diligent, and to throw the scent - misleading the IOC about the state and level of science being used by the various coaches and trainers who routinely dope their athletes at some point in their training.

Records are broken in every Olympic game, even though the major gains to changes in nutrition and sports science and training have not radically progressed for several decades or that, moreover, anatomically modern man has not changed for tens of thousands of years.

This announcement has so far caused a shock-wave sigh of relief among bloggers and concerned global citizens, who were initially taken aback by the politicization of the IOC process which undermines and contradicts the very framework and ethical purpose which the Olympic Games were set up for. 

Nevertheless, in the ruling, it is clear that Russian athletes representing the Russian team will be subjected to additional scrutiny. The finding itself also admits that the IOC itself has engaged in an 'emergency practice' of collective presumption of guilt which is contrary to natural jurisprudence and conceptions of natural justice: collective, and presumption of guilt.