So, the IOC has shown itself to be an organization capable of finding compromises. There are no barriers, barriers, obstacles, or whatever you want to call the non-admission of Russians. You can add the fashionable word “ban”. The IOC has wisely stated (so far it has only stated – it has not done anything yet) that it will consider the possibility of inviting Russian athletes in a neutral status and on an individual basis.
What is on an individual basis, probably, it is not necessary to explain specifically. We already went through this before Pyeongchang 2018. Even the hockey team of “athletes from Russia” was formally invited there one by one – “individually”. But they invited – that team even won, if I had not forgotten. There was a lot of noise that after 26 years they returned Olympic gold to their homeland. Here, of course, de jure is an obvious cant, because in 1992 there was a CIS team, and now there are “athletes from Russia”. But these are details.
What is in a neutral status, it is also not necessary to explain. You participate in the Olympics with full rights and equal grounds with all other athletes, only without a flag and an anthem. There is no news here – it would be strange to count on relief for a country under sanctions, some of which were initiated by the IOC a year ago.
There is an important “but”. Firstly, the doping story, on which we have been sitting tightly since Sochi-2014 and which we are sorting out, sorting out, promising, promising, but so far we have not finally figured it out. Many words have been said about this, so there is no point in repeating it. Therefore, Russian athletes (and not only them – this applies to everyone in general, but we deserve especially careful control) will be allowed to compete, provided that they comply with the World Anti-Doping Code and the relevant anti-doping rules.
In this direction, it is worth waiting for a huge amount of news and nuances. Personally, I’m terribly interested in whether Eteri Tutberidze will be forced to answer the question of what a doctor named Shvetsky is doing in her coaching staff, whose guilt in doping many athletes in recent years has been proven? Or is an attentive attitude guaranteed only to athletes, and their environment will not “wool”?
And the second condition is that politically clean (from the point of view of the IOC, of course) athletes will be invited. The IOC is just showing everyone else that sport is out of politics. Honest position. But what follows is just a good test for many of us: we welcome the decision and don’t pedal any more political issues – that means we want our sport to develop, for athletes to participate in world competitions, so that the artificially erected boundaries for our sport fall faster. We shout again about fictitious conditions and arm-twisting – we are engaged in demagogy. The ball is on our side.