As pointed out by the French poster artist Alain Carrier, it is China which is using the Olympics to the political end of trying to whitewash itself before the world. Therefore, a political response is appropriate. And today, the City of Paris, the city of liberty, the city which liberated itself from the last country which tried to use the Olympics to political ends, said no, refusing to let China and its hypocritical hyper-capitalist enablers co-opt the Olympics.
In Athens, the birthplace of Democracy, the authorities responded to those who would protest, including the French president of Reporters without Frontiers, by sealing off the ceremonies and promising to cart away anyone who even moved. In London, they tried to snuff out the torch; premiere Gordon Brown even tried to have it both ways, on the one hand permitting the torch to be carried through London, on the other hand avoiding to touch it. In Paris… In Paris…In my wonderful Paris city of light and liberation….
— Thousands turned out to defend Tibet and human rights.
— After protesters tried three times to snuff out the torch, the officials were forced to capitulate, and the torch had to take the bus.
— 25 deputies unfurled on the facade of the National Assembly a banner calling for the respect of Human Rights and liberty in Tibet.
— China demanded the annulation of ceremonies in front of City Hall after Robert Menard, the same president of Reporters without Borders who they’d tried to muzzle in Athens, unfurled a similar banner on the facade of Notre Dame, just across the River Seine.
— And one brave politician, Mayor Bertrand Delanoe, finally called out the argument that ‘politics should be separated from sports’ by saying, “”I stay attached to the values of human rights and the real values of the Olympics, which cannot be separated from the values of human rights.”