Another brilliant idea
The Olympics on TV

Infamy, infamy

I think the SCMP only employ Lau Nai-keung to annoy people (or maybe he pays them to publish the nonsense he writes).  Today he gives us the theory that the Western media are just jealous of China (Fakes offend Chinese as much as anyone - subscription required):

After the grand opening of the Beijing Olympics, some aspects of the show were later pounced on by the media. For one, some of the "live" fireworks seen marching through the city towards the "Bird Nest" stadium were computer generated. Then, the nine-year-old girl with the seemingly perfect combination of an angelic face and voice actually lip-synched her routine because the real singer was not pretty enough.

[...] this was like finding treasure for some China-bashers in the western media, and they made a big fuss about it. Let me tell you something: if the Chinese authorities had really wanted to fake things, like any other government, they would have made it a state secret, and nobody would have been allowed to even talk about it.

What nonsense!  How can you fake a firework display in Beijing and keep it secret?  It's not possible.  I don't think anyone would have cared too much if they had announced at the time what they done, but they did try to keep it secret, they failed, and of course that aroused media interest - as it would done if a UK or US broadcaster had done something similar (and fakery is a very hot topic in the British media right now).

The real fuss, it turns out, is not about the show. Critics just used these facts to insinuate that China is faking it and cheating in the competitions. A case in point are the female gymnasts. Unlike their American counterparts, the Chinese girls are so tiny that westerners suspect they must be underage. An American reporter pointedly asked one of the athletes whether she was, in fact, 16. Many western media reports dwelled on this point, citing incidents in the opening ceremony as substantiation of their claims.

It all boils down to one thing: some people are bad losers. If indeed they have so-called "evidence", as they claim, I suggest they file a formal complaint with the International Olympics Committee, which is obligated to do something. Defamation will not help anybody get a gold medal.

Watching the Chinese athletes grabbing one gold after another, I fully understand the feelings of some westerners. Many find it difficult to accept that the Chinese are coming up so fast. It will take time for them to adjust their superiority complex and acknowledge Chinese as equals. It is a western problem, not a Chinese one. The Chinese are basking in the glory and pride; they do not care what these people think.

I'm sure the Chinese people don't care, but if some of the Chinese gymnasts were too young to compete then that's breaking the rules, and again it is bizarre to think that any country would get away with this.  A complaint has been made to the IOC (Olympic probe into gymnasts' ages) and they are investigating - but I think we would all expect the documentation to support what the authorities have been saying all along. 

Any country that wins as many medals as China has done is bound to come under scrutiny.  It comes with the territory.

Comments

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Tom

It's not a question of Chinese girls being tiny per se, and some notion that westerners think therefore they are under 16. Its the fact that there exists apparent documentary evidence - certainly circumstantial evidence - that she is under 16.

If she is under 16 she should not have competed. Period. If proven to be under 16, she gets the gold medal stripped from her. Those are the rules that China and everyone else signed up to.

Then there is the role of the Chinese government possibly handing her false papers. What does Lau Nai-keung have to say about that? There is simple lesson though that Lau Nai-keung will certainly have miss carried away in his nationalistic fervour - never trust commies.

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