Alongside this year’s Winter Olympics in Beijing are the 2022 Alternative Global Olympics, awarded every four years to nations that exhibit the worst tendencies of governance or, as some leaders would say, the very best tendencies of governance.
For using a member of the Uyghur ethnic minority to light this year’s Olympic torch while systematically attempting to exterminate and/or brainwash the entire Uyghur population.
Silver: United States
The United States called for a diplomatic boycott at this year’s Winter Olympics, but robust participation by athletes that choose to ignore the ongoing atrocities and, instead, hope to sign lucrative endorsement deals.
Bronze: United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres
UN Secretary Guterres is attending the 2022 Winter Olympics, also choose to ignore the human rights violations in China. He defended his decision to ignore China’s present-day genocide by calling the Olympics an “instrument for peace… The Olympic Games is an extremely important event, and it’s an event that symbolizes the role of sports in bringing people together and in promoting peace.” His quote elicits a question: what is it that the United Nations actually does?
World’s Worst Leader
Gold: Russia and China (tie)
Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping joined at the hip. Greatest attributes? Warmongering, chest-thumping, press suppression, US election campaign interference, rampant corruption, and cyber terrorism.
Russian puppet Alexander Lukashenko, who proudly calls himself “Europe’s last dictator.” We can only hope.
Jair Bolsonaro, promoter of COVID vaccine disinformation and who refers to twice-impeached former US President Donald Trump lovingly as his “idol.” Accomplishments: 600,000 dead from COVID, accelerated destruction of the Amazon rain forest, and an economy in ruins. Helluva job Jair.
For imprisoning and “red-educating” the Uyghur ethnic minority while rebranding its genocide as a response to terrorism. Consideration also given for China’s annexation and colonization of Tibet.
For its brutal persecution and displacement of nearly one million Muslim Rohingyas. Remember, Myanmar is a majority Buddhist nation. Spin those prayer wheels!
For continuing to deny its lead role in the 1915-1918 genocide of Armenians. “It’s not a lie if you believe it.”
Murders of Journalists
Well done amigos! Four journalists gunned down in the month of January alone; more than 120 murdered since 2000. Reporters without Borders lists Mexico as the most dangerous country for a journalist. Afghanistan and India were runners-up, but gaining.
Silver: Saudi Arabia
For the murder and dismemberment of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. With a nod to Jared Kushner, who advised Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman on how to finesse the investigation of Khashoggi’s murder.
There have been 21 journalists (that we know of) killed in the Russian Federation since Putin took office in 2000, including journalist Anna Politkovskaya, who was killed in her apartment building in 2006.
For poisoning Alexander Litvinenko, who died a slow, horrible death from exposure to the radioactive isotope polonium-210. Russia denies involvement but will accept the medal nonetheless.
For poisoning Sergey Skripal and his daughter, who both somehow survived exposure to the nerve agent Novichok. Russia again denies involvement, blames the West, but will accept the medal nonetheless.
Bronze: Russia (clean sweep!)
For poisoning political dissident Alexey Navalny, who survived and is serving time in a Russian prison on the usual trumped-up charges that Putin is known to hand down to his political opponents. Nyet, Russia claims, but admits the medal is nice.
Unjustly Imprisoning Political Opponents
See above reference to Navalny.
Remember when Hong Kong was a democracy? Seems like yesterday. Or never. Remember the Hong Kong protestors? They seemed to have vanished.
For President Rodrigo Duterte’s imprisoning and murdering dissenters and activists. His security forces have been told to “ignore human rights.” As an aside, Duterte has also been accused of directing police to randomly kill drug suspects. Court costs have plummeted.
Gold: United States
A repeat gold medal winner. For its annual military budget is $738 billion, a nation where the national minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. Currently not at war. Well, for at least a few months anyway.
This runner-up currently spends $193 billion annually and hopes to someday conquer Taiwan, Japan, and all of Asia.
For spending $64 billion a year. Yes, India, a nation where around 70 percent of its population lives on less than $2 a day. Perhaps Indian President Narendra Modi also belongs on the medal stand for World’s Worst Leader.
Gold: United States
Accepting the medal on behalf of the United States is the Republican Party that referred to the January 6, 2021, insurrection in which 140 law enforcement officers were injured by violent supporters of defeated Trump, as “legitimate political discourse.”
Silver: United States
For COVID deniers, book banners, Proud Boys, militias, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Ron Johnson, Ted “Cancun” Cruz, Louie Gohmert, Mo Brooks, Sarah Palin…
Bronze: United States (a clean sweep!)
…Greg Abbott, Lauren Boebert, QAnon, the entire Trump family, the pillow guy, Tucker Carlson, Ron DeSantis, FOX News, Josh Hawley, the GOP, etc., ad infinitum.
God save us.Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of The Globe Post.