The grand illusion
August 22, 08, 11:40 am
Filed under: China, He Kexin, Olympics | Tags: , ,

We in America, especially the conservatives among us, have always known that the Chinese government was a shifty bunch. Now thanks to the spotlight of the Olympics the whole world is finally catching on. The Chi-Com’s latest sleight-of-hand comes in the all TOO petite form of Gold Medalist He Kexin:

The International Olympic Committee has ordered an investigation into mounting allegations that Chinese authorities covered up the true age of their gold-medal winning gymnastics star because she was too young to compete.

An IOC official told The Times that because of “discrepancies” that have come to light about the age of He Kexin, the host nation’s darling who won gold in both team and individual events, an official inquiry has been launched that could result in the gymnast being stripped of her medals.

The investigation was triggered as a US computer expert claimed yesterday to have uncovered Chinese government documents that he says prove she is only 14 – making her ineligible to compete in the Olympics – rather than 16, as officials in Beijing insist is her age.

Mike Walker, a computer security expert, told The Times how he tracked down two documents that he says had been removed from a Chinese government website. The documents, he said, stated that He’s birth date was January 1 1994 – making her 14 – and not January 1 1992, which is printed in her passport.

Though I wouldn’t condone it, I could at least sympathise with a young girl wanting so badly to compete in the Olympics that she would lie about her age. But a state sanctioned cover-up is a different matter completely and one that is much more disturbing. China is HOSTING these games, folks. The world’s eyes are upon them at all times. Did they really think they could get away with something like this?

With the fake fireworks in the opening ceremonies, some of you asked “So what?” With the lip-syncing debacle some of you also asked “So what?” Well here’s the so what: these stunts are a microcosm of a much bigger problem. What we are getting here is telling glimpse into the mind of a communist dictatorship. Pretty as everything apprears on the surface, all is not as it seems behind their ‘perfect’ facade. And the Chinese leaders are so divorced from reality that it doesn’t occur to them that people might see the strings in their little puppet show.

As for the IOC’s investigation… I’m not holding my breath. If this body is any bit as effective as the United Nations in dealing with China, this kid’s keeping her gold.


2 Comments so far
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Why don’t you wait until the IOC reports their findings before you incriminate China, or is innocent until proven guilty conditional upon nationality? I don’t agree with China’s censorship ( the recent iTunes issue for example ), but seeing the two Excel documents myself and the means by which Mr. Walker discovered them, I don’t think you have anything except circumstantial evidence to convict the host nation. I think you’re letting your bent against the Chinese government cloud your objectivity in the matter. If she is indeed under age, then you can add it to your arsenal against the Chinese government.

Comment by David

I think a distinction needs to be made here between a blog and a court of law (or committee). I don’t have or claim to have power to convict any person or nation. But I do have the right to say what I think and I may do so at any point with whatever evidence is available. And yes I do have a bias based upon years of observing the Chinese government. That bias and the circumstantial evidence so far leads me to believe this girl is still popping Flintstones chewables in the morning. I don’t put the blame on her for this situation… I doubt she had much choice in the matter.

“Innocent until proven guilty” certainly applies when it comes to law and justice and I think that right should be available to all citizens in all countries. I hope that it is some day — in China particularly.

Comment by hopperbach

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