Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Sports and Politics

An interesting post by Dan Drezner discusses whether sport can really "stop a war," as Bono claims in the new ESPN ads for the World Cup. Drezner is skeptical.

Well, I don't know if sports can stop a war (though I'll be rooting for Ivory Coast in the hopes that it might). But I do know sports can profoundly affect politics and world affairs. When I lived in South Africa briefly, I asked many people if they felt the economic sanctions the world imposed had any affect on the quality of their lives. Without exception, the answer was no. Instead, South Africans -- white South Africans, that is -- said that what they hated was S. Africa's exclusion from international sporting events, and that this, more than anything, made the country come to loathe apartheid.

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