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by
Rick Moran

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February 8, 2014 - 9:48 am
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The Russians chose a three-time Olympic champion figure skater who tweeted what some consider a racist picture of President and Mrs. Obama last summer to light the torch at the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Irina Rodnina’s selection was an obvious insult to the American president and leaves the question of how much contempt Vladimir Putin has for Barack Obama open to interpretation.

Putin is on a clear winning streak against Obama, having bested him on Syria, Iran, and the Ukraine in recent months. When it comes to measuring the influence of world leaders, I don’t know of too many analysts who wouldn’t observe that Putin is on the rise and Obama is on a decline.

But this particular nudge from the Russian president goes beyond politics and hits the president on a very personal level. And the world — perhaps judging Obama as well — doesn’t seem to care.

The Washington Post reports:

In response to criticism of the choice of Irina Rodnina to help light the Olympic torch Friday, the CEO of the Sochi Games said Saturday that politics had no place on the Olympic stage.

It has become a frequent refrain of officials associated with the 2014 Games.

Rodnina, 64, a three-time Olympic figure-skating champion in pairs, tweeted a doctored photograph of President Obama last September showing the president, seated at a dinner beside the First Lady, with a banana super-imposed on his image. After removing the image following a barrage of criticism, Rodnina defended her post as her right to freely express herself.

Asked what factors led to her selection for one of the Olympic Games’ highest honors, Dmitry Chernyshenko, CEO of the Sochi organizing committee, noted Saturday that Rodnina was a three-time Olympic champion and among the world’s most respected athletes.

“I want to stress that the Olympics is not about politics,” Chernyshenko said, “and any political talks and discussions are inappropriate for the Olympic Games.”

Asked whether the International Olympic Committee vetted her selection, IOC spokesman Mark Adams: “From the IOC point of view, clearly it is not the IOC that chooses torch bearers. As Dmitry said, she was chosen for what she has done in sport. She is a triple gold-medalist in skating, and she has done a great deal of work for sport, and that is what she was chosen for. But it was a decision that Sochi took, as they did with all of the torch bearers.”

Racism is about politics? Quick! Someone tell Al Sharpton! All this time we’ve been having a political argument about racism, and not a moral argument about tolerance and respect. Got to make a note of that the next time some MSNBC pundit calls out a conservative for being “racist.”

And, of course, both gentlemen above are 100% wrong. The Olympics are all about politics — always have been and always will be. The games drip with nationalistic fervor — even xenophobic fanaticism. During the Cold War, it was accepted that the conflict between communism and capitalism played out against a backdrop of athletes competing for gold.

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Top Rated Comments   
This proves the old adage that it's futile trying to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. We tried to do that when we elected Obama....twice. And the Russians are calling us on it now.

We have only ourselves to blame.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Putin doesn't respect Obama. No world leader does. The line give him a wedgie and take his lunch money extends around the globe. And we elected him twice. So how do you think the world looks at us?
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
I wonder what O'Bummer would have had to say if Snowden had trotted out to light the torch?

That would be priceless!
===================
"And the world — perhaps judging Obama as well — doesn’t seem to care."

The hell you say! The world is cheering on Putin!


31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (69)
All Comments   (69)
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I'm certain that Putin is just showing his sincere appreciation for how much more flexible Obozo is after the election.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Putin - doing the work Boehner and McConnell won't do. I kinda almost sorta like him - in an arm's-length sort of way...
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Obama said that he likes being president because he can do whatever he wants. Two can play that game.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm sorry, but a lot of people here are missing the essential points.
This isn't about Obama. This is about Putin.
The posting really was unacceptably racist. It showed someone tempting the Obamas with a banana, and the two of them responding in an ape-like manner.
This is a classic racist trope - depicting black people as apes or monkeys.
It is fully comparable to Nazi propaganda depicting Jews as rats.
To try to dehumanize other people in this way is barbaric. It demonstrates a level of violent crudity in the Putin gang that needs to be seen clearly and exposed for what it is.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
You mean Obama didn't like getting poked in the eye after he tried to poke the Russians in the eye with his gay delegation?
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Rodnina is very much loved by Russians for her artistry, expressive dances. In Russia, nobody cares what did she superimposed on the Obama's picture. American presidents come and go, but the beautiful dances Rodnina created stay in our memory all these years. Rodnina is much more important than our current president, in my view.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Cry me a river, Mr. Moran. President Obama is NOT worthy of respect in any way, shape, matter or form. Only by virtue of formality does anyone (except his minions, of course, & other hangers-on who adore him) treat him with anything other than utter contempt. He is the worst POTUS of US history due to his long list of policies that are undermining the interests of US citizens, the fighting men & women of our military, our overseas allies (the list could go on & on & on), IMO, & the whole world knows it!
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ummm, but Mr. Moran is not indicating that he feels the President is worthy of respect, nor is he lamenting that it is the case. He is lamenting the fact that we have a President who is unworthy of respect and noting how this is an incredibly blatant indication of it.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
*shrugs*

Right now I love the Russians.....this is the best corrupt insane Olympics EVER.

Heh.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
And this is what appeasement gets you.....
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
President Obama and Eric Holder are racists who ignore repeated violent attacks by black youths (and not-so youths) on whites and other non-blacks. Obama and Holder used the Zimmerman case to further entrench 'reverse racism' in the system of political correctness that pretty much rules in the US, at least in 'blue' areas. That Putin is probably a racist seems less interesting to me than those facts.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yet it is sad to see how the entire world despises the US president not because of his race but because of his obvious incompetence and narcissism. His only loyal followers are black racists who would vote for a street hydrant if it was painted black. I am so sorry that our first non-Caucasian president had to be this man. Pitiful.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Amen. He has also ruined the chances of other African-Americans. And if someone like Allan West might in theory have a chance, the Left and the blacks loyal to the Holder narrative will end his chances.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
The solution proposed by the AA lobby will be that half of Obama isn't black, so we must try a 100% candidate before passing judgement.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Right. Didn't Morgan Freeman say that?
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
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