At the Rio de Janeiro Olympics today, Egyptian Olympic judo fighter Islam El Shehaby refused to shake the hand of his Israeli opponent Or Sasson.
After Sasson defeated El Shehaby he put out his hand, which is customary in judo. Competitors are expected to either shake hands or bow at the beginning and end of matches. El Shehaby, however, insulted his opponent by rejecting the gesture and backing away, shaking his head. The referee called him to returnto the mat to bow, and he gave a perfunctory nod. Then he walked off.
Ah, that glorious Olympic spirit!
Rio Games judo spokesman Nicolas Messner said that El Shehaby’s attitude “will be reviewed after the games to see if any further action should be taken.” What review is necessary? The Egypt team should be penalized immediately, issue an apology to the disrespected athlete and his nation, or, if it refuses, be sent home. In a perfect example of Rationalization # 22, “It’s not the worst thing!”, Messner also said that this “is already a big improvement that Arabic countries accept to [fight] Israel.”
Boy, he’s right. I mean, what an improvement over the Munich Olympics, for example, when the Palestinians killed the Israeli athletes. Now that’s what I call bad sportsmanship.
Last week, Israeli athletes were barred from boarding a bus to the opening ceremony when Lebanese athletes refused to share it with Jews. Nice. But again, better than Munich.
Either the Olympics must insist that the participants uphold the values of the Games, or those alleged values are just propaganda.
Which, of course, they are.
Add this to my list of why I’m not wasting my time with the Olympics this year, or any year.
Source: Huffington Post