Some All-Army Boxing Gold Medalists wish the U.S. Army a happy 235th birthday from Fort Huachua. You can follow Army athletes on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ArmyAthlete.
It took two painful weeks:
After he was presented with his marathon medal on completion of the 26.2 mile course by Olympic legend Sir Steve Redgrave, after two painstaking weeks on crutches to complete the London course, he insisted that the support had been “overwhelming” all the way. The Royal Military Police Officer, who suffered catastrophic injuries during a rocket attack in Basra, Iraq, in February 2008, will return to duty with the army in July, but revealed that “a real interest has opened up in me about disability sport. I now feel a part of two families, the army, and the disability community. I have been developing an idea, and it is still only an idea, of perhaps helping to develop disability sport across the army.”
You can support Major Packer’s fund raising efforts at www.philpacker.com.
China is about to learn that you can’t stuff an infant in a leotard, shoot it out of a canon, and take home the gymnastics gold:
The International Olympic Committee has asked gymnastics officials to investigate whether the Chinese women’s gymnastics team that won the gold medal at the Beijing games had underage athletes, saying that more information had come to light.
“We’ve asked the gymnastics federation to look into it further,” IOC spokeswoman Giselle Davies said Friday. “If there is a question mark and we have a concern, which we do, we ask the governing body of any sport to look into it.”
It was not immediately clear what new information prompted the IOC to act now, three days after the gymnastics competition ended.
Messages for the International Gymnastics Federation were not immediately returned.
A gymnast must be 16 in an Olympic year to compete at the games. But questions about the ages of at least three of the athletes have persisted. Online records and media reports suggest three Chinese gymnasts — He Kexin, Jiang Yuyuan and Jang Yilin — may be as young as 14.
Free Tibet 2008 has an update:
After 60 hours in detention, we have no news about the status of five citizen journalists and activists, Brian Conley, Jeffrey Rae, Jeff Goldin, Michael Liss, and Tom Grant, and artist James Powderly. Students for a Free Tibet has contacted the American embassy about their case, but the Chinese government under law has 72 hours before it is required to notify an embassy about foreign nationals who have been detained. We hope that they will be released before that time. If they are not, we will ask for your help to increase the pressure on the Chinese government in a number of different ways – through pressure on the Chinese government directly and through Congressional representatives, participation in online email and fax blasts and, as we always do, taking the effort to the streets.
One of the detained, artist James Powderly, explained his motivations in an earlier video.
Students for a Free Tibet has an update:
Beijing – Brian Conley, creator of the well-known videoblog, Alive in Baghdad, was detained with his friend, Jeffrey Rae, early Tuesday, August 19th in Beijing. Their detention appears to have taken place at the same time as that of international artist James Powderly, whose detention was reported Tuesday. Three other bloggers and activists, Jeff Goldin, Michael Liss, and Tom Grant, have also been missing since Tuesday morning. Conley, 28, Rae, 28, Goldin, 40, Liss, 35, Grant, 39 are all American citizens.
The five “citizen journalists” and activists were in Beijing to support and promote human rights, freedom of expression, and freedom for the Tibetan people. They and numerous others have acted as an independent media centre for the dozens of pro-Tibet activists in Beijing who have sought to draw attention to the Chinese government’s occupation of Tibet during the Olympics. Rae and Conley shot and released online high-resolution photographs and footage of the recent protest by Students for a Free Tibet supporters at the Chinese Ethnic Culture Park.
A little additional information has leaked out – but not much:
At about noon Tuesday, Conley’s wife in Philadelphia received a text message from him reading “In Jail. All fine.”
Events like this just focus additional attention on a question many more people should be asking. Just why does the IOC allow brutal totalitarian governments like China to host the Olympics?
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