Category Archives: 2020 Olympics

Report: Russia planned cyberattack on Tokyo Olympics

If the latest media reports are to be believed, the Russian government planned a major cyberattack against the Tokyo Olympics, which were to take place last summer before being postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The question of Russia and cyber attacks is no longer if the country engages in such activities but how often it can be blamed.

The narrative is now quite familiar: A U.S. government agency (often supported by another Western ally) accuses Russia of a cyberattack. Names of the accused, who almost always are men, often are provided. Russia quickly denies the accusation. This kabuki theater play ends with all parties knowing that no matter what did — or didn’t happen — the accused will never be arrested because they live in Russia.

Monday’s announcement came on the same day the U.S. indicted six Russians amid accusations they tried to disrupt the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea. It coincided with Russia making its own claim of being hacked.

Keep in mind that the U.S. is not innocent; it, too, carries out cyberattacks against its enemies. Iran often is the target, but China also has been in the U.S. cyber crosshairs.

Cyberattacks happen every single day. That statement is not meant to defend or criticize the action; the reality is they happen. But we’d be naive to suggest that liking the attack is determined solely by whether friend or foe is responsible for it.

So, about those Olympics in 2021…

Flag of Japan, public domain image

Reuters reports that all of us who are looking forward to the rescheduled Summer Olympics next year had better not hold our breath.

In interviews with a dozen infectious diseases experts, a common theme emerged: The Olympics would increase the risk of an outbreak.

“Infection will flare up if we push ahead with the Olympics and hold them. There is no doubt about it,” said Daiichi Morii, a doctor at Osaka University Hospital’s infection control team.

“The virus is barely under control as we are putting a halt on the inflow of people from overseas,” Morii added. “With events like the Olympics, the virus will come in for sure and the number of infections will shoot up inevitably.”

The Telegraph: IOC says any athlete who takes a knee at Olympics faces ban

According to the Telegraph,

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) published guidelines in January banning any form of protest at the Tokyo Games – including taking a knee, raising a fist or refusing to follow protocol at medal ceremonies – and confirmed to Telegraph Sport on Tuesday that “the guidelines are still in place”.

Now, before you prepare to fly to Tok…no, wait, we can’t do that these days.

But before you choose to call the IOC’s decision stupid (or something close to it), remember that the IOC has consistently affirmed that the Olympics must be above political taint; instead, they are mere opportunities for athletes to gather for the fun and love of sport.

(Insert laugh track here.)

Okay, now you may tell the IOC exactly what you think.