#Official Commentary of Alla Barkhatnova on how sport becomes of big-time politics’ tool

Great sport for a long time ceased to be an arena for the detection of the maximum capacity of people. It turned into a big business, which, in turn, is run by the whole industry: media, marketing agencies, construction companies, manufacturers of merchandise, clothing, medicines, equipment… Huge money is spinning in business of sports betting. Also, it is possible to make money out of advertising, ticket sales, brands and media rights.

Great sport and big money long ago have become synonymous. Particular attention is drawn to the major sporting events that gather around them a huge audience, fill arenas and the winners are paid astronomical fees.

Recent events around the Olympics in Rio showed the world double standard here too. Part of Russian athletes in the absence of hard evidence is disqualified, and the Americans make it possible to cross the torch, in which they are ranked last.

Sochi Olympics showed the world the worth of Russian athletes. At the Olympics in Rio Russians occupied the 4th place in the team event, the Russian team was not in full strength. I think that for international sports organisations it was not just a hit. In the language of boxing it is a knockout.

I believe that all history associated with the “WADA’s investigation of accusations of Russian participants of the Olympic Games in Sochi of doping use” d/d July 16, 2016, prepared under the leadership of President of WADA, Richard McLaren is actually an elementary attempt to create for Russia a few extra troubles. McLaren’s report does not hold water and is completely based on unfounded speculation. It has no direct evidences and clues, there a huge number of inconsistencies, contrived and false claims. Of course, Mr McLaren said that the evidences are stored in his safe at home, but since when in the world pointing and yelling: “I know that they are guilty,” can serve as an accusation? It is no wonder that not only Russian experts, but also the West ones considered this opus insolvent.

But the job is done: McLaren got his bat. Part of the Russia’s Olympic team was suspended, Paralympians weren’t even allowed to go to the Games, and a member of the Belarusian delegation Andrew Fomochkin, which held the Russian flag in the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games in Rio, was deprived of accreditation by the International Paralympic Committee. Thus, great sport has become more similar to political fights without rules, there is no place for the law and honour, and there is only a right of a strong. Russia has repeatedly argued that such an approach does not work out with them. I have no doubt that they will prove this time as well.

Alla Barkhatnova, the DPR People’s Council deputy

Official website of the DPR People’s Council

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