Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Summer Olympics in Dubai? Seriously?

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai, has come out to say the emirate is going to look seriously at making a bid to host the 2020 Summer Games. No one who is in the UAE at the moment can actually believe this, and not just because the minute you walk outside your glasses fog up and it becomes difficult to breathe. And it's only June.

No doubt this would a boon to Dubai and the UAE (although I am not really sure the Emirates want the world's spotlight on their labour and human rights record, although things could have changed a lot by then). But... seriously? How can anyone think this will fly? I am really not the defeatist sort, but there is a reason the Summer Games are not held in this region and it seems insurmountable. Qatar made a bid for the 2016 Summer Games, but their proposal was to move it to the fall, and that doesn't really merge with the interests of the television broadcasters or the athlete's training schedules.


Seabee said...

Yes, building the facilities is not the problem, it's the climate.

The games would have to go to something like October and that really doesn't fit in with the rest of the athletic shedule.

There's also the dust problem - even if there's less cement dust in the air in 2020 there's still the sand problem. Not good for athletes who are sucking in great gulps of air!

Remember the Beijing Games pollution problems? They took draconian measures with factories closed, vehicles banned from the roads etc. We can't do that here to stop the sand.

Still, even if it doesn't go ahead it'll be more publicity for Brand Dubai.

Graeme said...

If they can make air conditioned shopping centres they can probably make air conditioned stadiums.

And the Olympic committee has already sold out to a despotic regime with no concern for human rights, so there's no precedent setting there either.

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