Who Would Bet on a Future Olympics?

February 15, 2021

We didn’t suspect it at the time, but the 2016 Rio Olympics may have been the last ever summer games. There were clues. Until 2015, most of us hadn’t even heard of the Zika virus. First identified in 1947, it is transmitted by mosquitoes, typically causing asymptomatic or mild infection but...

The Media’s Imaginary Veiling of Women in MENA

October 18, 2016

Western media perpetuates a stereotype of veiled women largely based on sexist views, not on facts. One of the striking images of the 2016 Rio Olympics was that of a beach volleyball game, with bikini-clad German player Kira Walkenhorst on one side of the net and Egyptian player Doaa Elghobashy...

Rio Gets Its Taste of Middle East Politics

August 16, 2016

Regardless of how inclined we are to have politics-free Olympics, it seems like an impossible task. Politically, the Middle East has been a global hotbed of interstate wars, civil conflicts and authoritarian regimes. Socially, it is home to some of the most restrictive social systems and...

The World This Week: Refugees Saving Grace of Rotten Rio Olympics

August 07, 2016

The Olympics are now an exorbitant extravaganza for gladiatorial performances that are paid for by people who cannot afford them. This week, the Olympics began in Rio de Janeiro with a spectacular ceremony as usual. This being Brazil, the games promise to be one hell of a party. The...

Saudi Projects “Change” Amid Rio Olympics

August 07, 2016

Women’s sports are likely to be a key test of Saudi Arabia’s ability to tackle its social, political and economic challenges with Vision 2030. Saudi Arabia is projecting miniscule steps to reverse decades of denial of women’s sporting rights as evidence of significant changes in the...

Judo as a Sport for Social Justice

August 06, 2016

Judo cannot change the world, but it can help create the community, empathy and understanding that we need today. As the Rio Olympics are underway, Americans should review the role that sports play in our society and, in particular, in raising our children. While controversies surrounding large...

2016 Olympics: What Rio Doesn’t Want the World to See

July 30, 2016

When we talk about the advantages that come with the World Cup and the Olympic Games, we need to remember who really stands to benefit. When Brazil hosted the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the country witnessed mass protests against billions of public money spent on new sporting venues and...

The Farce of the Rio Olympics

July 27, 2016

The Rio 2016 Olympic Games are a representation of the many opportunities lost by Brazil. Brazil—that is, Rio—is about to host what is perhaps the most important event of the multi-billion-dollar global industry that we call sports. You know, the Olympic Games, that exciting TV show that is...