IOC's Decision to Ban Moscow From 2018 Olympics an ‘Attempt to Humiliate Russia'

© Sputnik / Ramil Sitdikov / Go to the mediabankOlympic Park in Pyeongchang
Olympic Park in Pyeongchang - Sputnik International
On Tuesday, the International Olympic Committee ruled that the Russian Olympic Committee would be suspended from competition, meaning Russia will not be represented at the upcoming 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

But the decision also doesn't necessarily mean that there won't be any Russian athletes present. In fact, a select group of athletes that are deemed "clean" by a special commission will be able to participate in the games under a neutral flag.

Essentially any athletes that meet the IOC's criteria "will compete… under the Olympic Flag."

For retired boxer Danny Shaw, the whole uproar over Russia's alleged doping program is really just "an attempt to humiliate Russia."

Speaking to Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear, Shaw says that banning Russia from the games is simply a move to politicize sports.

"It's extremely selective because there are other countries that don't exactly have a clean record, but only Russia is banned at this point," the City University of New York professor told show hosts Brian Becker and John Kiriakou. "I think we have to see this in the wider campaign of US sanctions against Russia and the wider campaign of Russophobia."

Fellow guest Alan Moore, host of the Capital FM Sports show based in Moscow, echoed Shaw's sentiments.

"[Russian President] Vladimir Putin himself stood up and said, ‘Listen guys, we have had a doping problem in Russia and we're trying to fix it,' but every time Russia takes a step to do something, the bar gets raised up again," Moore said. "So nothing Russia will do or can do will be enough."

Samuel Schmid, Chair of the IOC Disciplinary Commission, and Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee, attend a news conference after an Executive Board meeting on sanctions for Russian athletes, in Lausanne, Switzerland, December 5, 2017 - Sputnik International
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Allegations about Russia's state-sponsored doping system are largely based on claims made by Grigory Rodchenkov, former head of Russia's Anti-Doping Center. Shaw says "the evidence is shoddy" and that "the US and other international parties have run with this to vilify Russia."

Rather than attack another country for doping cases by its athletes, Shaw suggests the Land of the Free instead use this moment to reflect on its own athletes' use of drugs.

"Look at the plague of performance enhancement drugs across the United States," Shaw tells Becker and Kiriakou. "A massive problem with painkillers… according to some estimates anywhere from 10 percent to 85 percent of baseball players have used steroids."

Ultimately, if anti-doping officials really want to get their hands on a scandal, "they should look no further than the United States," he added.

Selected Russian athletes will join Kuwaiti nationals who competed under the Olympic flag in the 2016 Summer Games. However, the Kuwaiti athletes participated under the neutral flag after the Kuwait Olympic Committee was suspended due to the Kuwaiti government's interference in the committee, Reuters reported.

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