- Foreign affairs March 21
As the fallout from Russia's absorption of Crimea continues, some are suggesting that the international community should go beyond economic sanctions to target a particular point of pride for Vladimir Putin's regime: Russia's hosting of the 2018 World Cup. From The Guardian:
Speaking on BBC Question Time, [shadow health secretary Andy Burnham] said it was FIFA's decision to make but it should "revisit" that choice.
Clive Efford, Labour's shadow sports minister, later said that no country should "unilaterally boycott" the 2018 World Cup in Russia but "FIFA should discuss contingency plans today in case the situation escalates." [The Guardian]
These days, the standard line is that mixing global politics and sports is ineffective, hurting the athletes and the fans more than anyone else. That was the response to calls that the U.S. and other nations boycott the Sochi Winter Olympics over Russia's anti-gay laws, for example. But since Russia's invasion of the Crimean Peninsula, the Sochi Games — originally symbolic of a gentler, kinder Russia — have come to be seen as an enormous publicity stunt to hide Putin's more sinister agenda. The 2018 World Cup is a long ways away, but FIFA President Sepp Blatter will be under some pressure to consider whether he wants the prestige of the World Cup to be used in a similar fashion.- -
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- After Ferguson: Stop deferring to the cops
- Ferguson riots were terrible — but this racist reaction was worse
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The hilarious hypocrisy of Republicans complaining about the imperial presidency
- Don't argue about politics this Thanksgiving. Just don't.
- Is it now OK to have sex with animals?
- In Ferguson, Michael Brown lost his life — and America's police lost the benefit of the doubt
- The slippery slope of Twitter's attempts to stop harassment against women
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Hey, scolds: Stop telling us to enjoy a healthy Thanksgiving
Subscribe to the Week