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Unnamed Olympic Games: Competitions Interrupted by War
Exactly 75 years ago, the sky of Leningrad was lit up with a magic fireworks. So the residents celebrated the final liberation of their hometown from the blockade, which lasted more than two years. Our editorial staff could not miss an important date. We wondered how the Second World War affected sports?
Siege of Leningrad
Photo: RIA Novosti
The Olympics were canceled only a few times in history, but each time the reason was military action. We remember how it was.
The Japanese city of Sapporo was preparing to host the first winter games in Asia. But two years before the start of the big war, Japan refused to host the competition. The Olympic Committee chose to replace the quiet St. Moritz. It would seem that a city in neutral Switzerland is the best solution. However, it had to be changed again due to a conflict between the organizers. The Olympics were now hosted by Garmisch-Partenkirchen, a German ski resort in Bavaria. Can you guess what happened next? Germany unleashed a world war and the Olympic Committee officially canceled the 1940 Winter Olympics.
Japan had a second chance to host the Olympic Games. However, the Summer Games had to be moved from Tokyo to Helsinki due to the Sino-Japanese War. Finland began to prepare medals and badges, because even with the outbreak of World War II, the decision to hold the Olympics remained in force. Only in early May 1940, the Olympic Committee recognized martial law and canceled the 12th Games.
Due to the war, international events were canceled. Even the sacred truce, traditional for the Olympics, could not overcome the brutality of hostilities. This does not mean at all that people did not want to strive for victory and love. The world did not stop appreciating sports, so the Olympics did not cease to exist, and the Games of the war years were simply postponed for several years.
London was going to host the 13th games in 1944, but to do so it turned out only four years after the war. The English capital became the city where the first post-war Olympic Games were held. They were named Harsh Games because of the devastation around. A similar situation happened with the 1944 Winter Games. The Italian resort of Cortina d'Ampezzo managed to host them after 12 years.
Soviet athlete, weightlifter, Ivan Udodov
Photo: RIA Novosti
Unnamed Olympic Games
During the war, Italy still hosted the Winter Games in the Alps at the beginninge 1940. Germany, its allies and some neutral states at that time took part in them. These competitions justly did not receive international status and recognition, therefore they remained nameless and unknown.
Let's be more tolerant and kinder to each other. Let the demonstration of the strength and dexterity of states become appropriate only at competitions with a well-known motto faster, higher, stronger.