Today, President Obama flies to Copenhagen to lobby the International Olympic Committee to award the 2016 Summer Games to Chicago. So we know that President Obama wants the Olympics.
But do the Olympics want the United States? The IOC’s history of the Games, titled “Athens to Athens,” was written by British journalist David Miller and published in 2003. Here is the IOC’s official statement, on page 345, on 9/11 and the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. It sheds light on what the IOC thinks of the US:
[Y]et again every foreigner was either embarrassed or irritated by the rampant American media chauvinism. George W. Bush breached protocol when declaring the Games open ‘on behalf of a proud, determined and grateful nation.’ In the space of five months the American people seemed wholly to have forgotten what they had temporarily begun to acknowledge on September 11: that while the immense achievements of the nation over two centuries are regarded with admiration and not a little envy, there are many who find US triumphalism unacceptable.
The IOC’s implication is that the terrorist attacks of 9/11 were launched by a few of the “many” offended by unacceptable American triumphalism, that the initial American response to the attacks was justified contrition for American arrogance, but that, regrettably, Americans are too mindlessly patriotic to recognize in any enduring way their own culpability in causing the attacks.
So how do you feel about President Obama going to Copenhagen to lobby the IOC now?