Japanese in the streets of Tokyo where the speech of the Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, is broadcast on the establishment of the state of emergency due to the deterioration of the health situation linked to Covid-19, on July 8.

There will be a “before” and “after” Tokyo Olympics which, postponed for a year due to the pandemic, will begin on July 23. It is difficult to think that the states which will host the next Olympic Games (starting with China for the Winter Games in 2022 and France for the Summer Games in 2024) will not learn from the trap in which s The government of Yoshihide Suga is locked up by wanting to maintain the event at all costs, in defiance of the warnings of medical experts on the health risks and of the opposition of the majority of the Japanese.

The holding of these Olympic Games under a state of emergency, in response to the resurgence of contaminations (in particular due to the Delta variant) and without spectators on practically all the competition sites, strips the event of any festive and meaningless character. ideal of communion through sport, of which the Olympism is the expression.

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To the dissatisfaction of the opponents of the Games is now added that of the Japanese fans who after having obtained tickets to attend the events with a hard fight are deprived of them. The Suga government has achieved the feat of arousing almost unanimous discontent among the Japanese, whether they are opposed or in favor of the Games.


In this case, the IOC followed its own roadmap: to preserve a model guaranteeing its resources and the financing of world sport. Three quarters of its income depends on the financial windfall of the broadcast of the Olympics: 90% of this money is donated to the national Olympic committees and international federations, all affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Fearing a withdrawal from the sponsors, the IOC paid little attention to the feelings of the Japanese. He appears to be the sole beneficiary of the holding of the event, the preparations of which forced the Suga government to flee forward, such “A player who loses and bets even more in the hope of recovering”, according to the formula of political scientist Koichi Nakano.

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This blindness may come as a surprise on the part of a country that is considered to be super-organized and efficient. An image that is not false but must be balanced because the Archipelago is not free from slippages, such as the major diseases linked to pollution in the 1960s and 1970s, which were slow to be recognized, or the nuclear disaster of the Fukushima power station in 2011, due to the lack of management by the operator and state supervision. Another example is the current delay in vaccination in Japan due to red tape.

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