Western media ramp up calls for Olympic boycott, but is this anything new?

Andy Boreham
The fact that negative coverage is much more intense than 2008 is merely a sign of China's growing influence of the past 13 years.
Andy Boreham
Directed by Andy Boreham.

Western media is ramping up calls for a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing 2022 Winter Games over some more trumped up claims pertaining to the China "human rights slash democracy" trope, but is this anything new?

The Washington Post recently joined the chorus, pushing for US President Joe Biden to shun the games. Their basis this time? You guessed it: Xinjiang. Oh, and Hong Kong and Taiwan, too.

"Boycott campaigns for the Beijing Winter Games had already gained traction in Western capitals," their article claims, before going on to bring up accusations that have been rebutted on multiple fronts, such as "the mass internment of Uygurs, Kazakhs and other mostly Muslim groups in Xinjiang" and "religious repression in Tibet."

Let me make this clear: There is absolutely no credible evidence of mass internment in Xinjiang by any stretch of the imagination. It's interesting that the Washington Post are bringing this up again since other foreign media already gave up this unproven narrative months ago.

Yes, there was a crackdown in that region over terrorist attacks – today, China has been free of such attacks for what seems like an eternity.

The success of this crackdown has left Western governments, who have struggled with violent religious extremism for decades, on the back foot. Their only option now, it seems, is to paint what happened in Xinjiang as "genocide," despite there being zero credible evidence to back up these claims.

The Washington Post claims "several democratic nations, including the United States, labeled China's Xinjiang policy 'genocide,'" I'm surprised that they're going back to such a claim, considering other media have already abandoned it due to there being no credible evidence.

Former British police officer Jerry Grey, who has lived in China for nearly two decades, wrote an excellent response to questions from a Daily Mail journalist this week regarding the situation in Xinjiang.

He talks in depth about the Western mainstream media assertion that genocide happening in Xinjiang is a proven fact, when it is anything but.

"As far as I know, no world leader has condemned China for interning Uygur Muslims in camps," he wrote. "The president of the United States has not said it ... Nor, for the record has Boris Johnson, Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron, Ursual von der Leyen or David Maria Sassoli, of the EU, nor have Scott Morrison or Justin Trudeau."

"China has done an excellent job of stamping out terrorism in the region, I don't say this, the United Nations counter-terrorism chief Vladimir Voronkov does, and he should know."

But is this anything new? Well, not really. Any time the Olympics is held in countries that threaten Western hegemony, Western mainstream media and governments put on their self-righteous hats and threaten boycotts, usually just as a way to appease their domestic audiences who have come to expect this type of virtue signaling.

The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia was besieged by calls for boycotts over recent legislation passed there that was viewed, using a Western lens, as anti-LGBT.

Then if we go back even further, Beijing 2008 was also hit with wall-to-wall Western media coverage calling for boycotts over whatever issue was trendy then – probably something to do with Tibet.

But more than a decade has passed since then and Tibet is no longer a "cool" cause, so they've switched their targets to more trendy topics: Xinjiang, Hong Kong, and now Taiwan.

"China's with-us-or-against-us attitude over human rights makes compromise difficult," the Washington Post article goes on, again highlighting a massive misunderstanding of China's position on international relations.

All China has ever asked is that foreign governments stay out of the country's domestic affairs, a plea that the US – the one country in the world that continually infiltrates other sovereign nations, using violence and other oppressive means – blatantly ignores.

One of the ways the US tries to legitimatize its savage meddling in other countries is by trumping up often spurious claims – for example the existence of weapons of mass destruction or fictional human rights abuses – as a way to appease the citizens of the US as well as the international community.

These calls to boycott are nothing new, and they will continue and get louder as we approach February. But China shouldn't take that to heart: The fact that negative coverage is much more intense than 2008 is merely a sign of the country's growing influence of the past 13 years.

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