Tuesday, April 08, 2008

a modest proposal for the olympic torch run

The Olympic torch parade from Greece to Beijing is being thoroughly rained upon as protesters repeatedly interfere with its progress.

Now the International Olympic Committee (that reviled group of avaricious corrupt old men, but that's a different story) is considering changing plans for subsequent relays following the most recent problems in Paris.

One day they are looking at - this Wednesday, when the torch makes its one pass through the US of A. The planned city? San Francisco.

If you are the IOC or the Chinese government worried about having a bunch of human-rights-loving, Dalai Lama-supporting, "Free Tibet"-sign-painting protesters disrupt the run, San Francisco is, next to Lhasa, the LAST city on earth you would send the torch.

So, in the spirit of international solidarity and Olympic good cheer, I would like to offer the PERFECT American place to let the torch run. Well, not quite American - but close enough for Olympic work.


Seriously, think about it. Gitmo has two classes of people: American military personnel (perhaps with a few scattered civilian torturers among them) and a bunch of imprisoned Arabs and Afghans who for purposes of this discussion, are not a significant factor.

You can fly the torch, athletes, IOC officials, and Chinese government types down there for a glorious day in the sun. You can get a sun-tan company to sponsor the event.

For the athletes, you will have palm trees and a sunny day and nobody will try to grab the torch.

The IOC officials won't notice anything amiss. They are used to dealing with corrupt and repressive regimes.

The troops there can be counted on to behave. After all, American troops are so well trained they can pose behind the de facto President and Vice-King Cheney and keep a straight, nay even an attentive and supportive expression on their faces, while Bush and Cheney make the latest ludicrous allegations that the latest bombing in Baghdad means we are winning in Iraq. The troops will have something more interesting to do for one day than routine drills and hosing down blood-spattered torture chambers.

And being at an American prison/torture camp might bring back waves of nostalgia for the Chinese government types.

Really, this is a can't-lose proposition. I urge the IOC to make the change immediately. For the Olympic ideal.

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