China: 2022 Winter Olympics Boycott


Avari Wang, Staff Writer

The 2022 Winter Olympics are scheduled to happen in Beijing, China and people are excited for the quadrennial Games either as competitors or spectators watching elite athletes around the world compete. However, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo voiced his opinion on Mar. 18 about whether or not China should be allowed to host the Winter Olympics.

“Permitting China to host next year’s Winter Olympics would give Beijing a credibility boost similar to what was enjoyed by Nazi Germany after the 1936 Summer Games in Berlin,” said Pompeo.

Due to Beijing’s mass incarceration of Uighur Muslims from 2014 to 2019, Pompeo called for a boycott to change the location of the 2022 Winter Olympics. He declared China’s actions genocidal and several Republicans, including a former UN ambassador Nikki Haley, agreed. Antony Blinken, Pompeo’s successor, and the United Nations’ Genocide Convention also backed his claims. 

What Pompeo and others believe to be true is that what China’s administration did is eerily similar to what happened in 1930s Germany. Because Germany hosted the Olympics at the time, it gave them credibility which may have contributed to the Holocaust.

“We ought not to permit that to happen. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has a responsibility to make sure that the host for these Games deserve it. This regime certainly does not,” said Pompeo. 

Furthermore, Pompeo alleged that he thought the Trump administration had handled American interactions with China in the right way.

“When they’re violating basic norms for trade, we need to impose costs on them. President Trump placed tariffs on Chinese products. When they’re stealing our secrets, we kick them out of the consulate in Houston when they were conducting espionage there. You need real deeds, real action. So that’s the only thing that Xi Jinping can possibly understand,” said Pompeo.

In describing China, Pompeo said it was “the greatest existential threat to our country.”

Despite the controversy, Pompeo expressed his wish for American athletes to participate in the Games, but reiterated that it wouldn’t be wise to have them do it in China.

While President Joe Biden’s administration has acknowledged the abuse of Uighurs, it has not yet responded to the call to boycott the Olympics. The future is uncertain on where the 2022 Winter Olympics will take place.

Ultimately, the decision about whether or not to move the destination will be up to the IOC. The IOC has recognized that none of the previous boycotts that they have had in the past were effective. The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) also said that it would hurt athletes who have been training for the Games. As the call to relocate the Games grows, a tough decision will have to be made.


Photo courtesy of WSJ.COM