If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

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If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

Postby dbirds » Wed Dec 12, 2012 3:04 pm

Here is Hersh's column referenced on main page. He brings up a great point!

If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

Globetrotting by Philip Hersh
1:04 p.m. CST, December 11, 2012

The International Olympic Committee has a tendency to make up rules that suit its purposes.

[rest of this post, and subsequent one, which finished reproducing the story in toto, excised by mods for violation of copyright rules]
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Re: If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

Postby Gabriella » Thu Dec 13, 2012 5:14 am

Sorry, which 'East Germans' are you referring to? All East Germans? If so, why? Is there evidence that EVERY East German athlete was on drugs? If so, can you provide a reference to that?

As far as I recall, there are some Stasi documents that illustrate SOME East Germans were on doping programmes. Is that evidence comprehensive proof that EVERY East German was? No, it isn't. Can we infer that ALL East Germans were, because of the evidence that shows others were? We could, but in that case should we then infer that every athlete that trained under Koch's coach, Wolfgang Meier, was on drugs - Marie Jose Perec? Should we infer that everyone that traineder under Ekkart Arbeit was on drugs - Denise Lewis? Should we infer that every team mate of Marion Jones who was trained under Trevor Graham was on drugs - Shawn Crawford, Chandra Sturrup, Me'Lissa Barber? Should we infer that every athlete who once trained under Chuck Debus was on drugs - Merlene Ottey? Should we infer JJK was on drugs because of the allegation against Florence and Bobby Kersee by Darrell Robinson?

Or are we going to cherry pick who we think was clean because we like them and they are our heroes? The Women's WR for the 100, 200, 400, 800, 100mh, HJ, LJ, SP, DT and heptathlon were all set in the 1980s. But let me guess, you'd happily see all the Eastern Bloc records go and keep the US ones? You think maybe 10.49/21.34/7291 are ok? Dude, wake up and smell the coffee.

You cannot ban 'every' East German because, guess what, there isn't evidence that every one of them was on drugs. Does common sense tell us they all were? Possibly, but then common sense tells us some of the performances from Western athletes in the 60's, 70's and 80's was assisted, but we don't have all the evidence for that either.
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Re: If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

Postby bambam » Thu Dec 13, 2012 6:02 pm

GDR doping is well documented in Stasi documents. See work by Brigitte Berendock and Werner Franck, which details it. See Doping documents - From Research to Commit Fraud. Springer-Verlag, Berlin 1991, ISBN 3-540-53742-2

I've been asked by various media outlets a few times about Armstrong and the recent rulings, and every time they mention USADA's quote that this was the most professional systematic doping scheme ever seen in major sport, I simply tell them that it pales in comparison to what the GDR did.

Certainly not every GDR athlete was doping, but every high level one of them, those that made it to the Olympics in the 1976-88 era, was - or they weren't taken to the Olympics. And it wasn't doping the athletes did - the system made them do it, or they were thrown out of it.
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Re: If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

Postby gh » Thu Dec 13, 2012 10:09 pm

This always brings me back to the heavy philosophical question: who was dirtier, the systematically doped Eastern Bloc athletes who had no choice (and some of whom may well have been at least somewhat ignorant of what was going on) or the open-market dopers of the "free world" who were the ones on the cutting edge—by choice—of all that was new and exciting in the PED market?
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Re: If Armstrong loses Olympic medal, why not East Germans?

Postby lionelp1 » Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:26 am

Lets ban the East German Government... oops.... doesn't exist any more.

Its pathetic, and intellectually lazy of any journalist to equate an evil and dishonest totalitarian government's actions with the blatant lies/denials for decades of a drugged up criminal in a "free" society. Mere excuses for Armstrong and his team will NOT suffice. Well done David Walsh of the Sunday Times.

Phil Hersh shows no understanding that a Communist regime can and did put great pressure on individual athletes to cheat, hardly similar to the perverse behaviour of Armstrong, so called winnner of 7 Tours.
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