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Discussion: IOF suspends Russian Orienteering Federation

in: Orienteering; General

Feb 28, 2022 12:50 PM # 
Earlier today the IOF suspended the membership of the Russian Orienteering Federation.

Feb 28, 2022 1:02 PM # 
Feb 28, 2022 2:46 PM # 
Unlike the Olympics > "Athletes will also not be allowed to participate as neutral athletes."
Feb 28, 2022 3:12 PM # 
Why the distinction re "neutral athletes", or do I have to read even more?
Feb 28, 2022 3:30 PM # 
Always a shame when this happens, the leaders don't give a damn about their people or the athletes, but they are the ones who suffer.
Feb 28, 2022 3:36 PM # 
Mr Wonderful:
re: neutral athletes, eg:

"There are 204 Russian athletes competing in the 2022 Winter Games as "neutrals" under the moniker ROC as part of ongoing sanctions imposed by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). Russia cannot officially send any athlete to an international sports competition until December 2022."

from here
Feb 28, 2022 5:14 PM # 
Apparently I need to be more clear.
I am not questioning the IOC (Olympic) creation of "neutral athletes". That rationale is unfortunately abundantly clear.
I am questioning why the IOF (Orienteering) policy is more restrictive than the IOC.
Feb 28, 2022 5:17 PM # 
I think IOF is just following IOC guidelines
Feb 28, 2022 5:21 PM # 
No they are not.
That is the point.
Jagge, your link references a discussion, not a passed guideline, or practice.
Feb 28, 2022 5:28 PM # 
... and yes, I completely understand why the IOC needs to consider banning all Russian athletes.

I submit those reasons probably do not apply to orienteering, and being a non Olympic sport is a big part of that.
Feb 28, 2022 5:40 PM # 
I think the link does not reference to just a dscsson, it references to the resolutuion they made today.
Feb 28, 2022 5:47 PM # 
The question remains, why are we (IOF) saluting something we are not part of, and with which we have a seriously different situation?

Apparently we kissed their (IOC) ass before they were even bending over. That doesn't say much for our leadership.

edit for below
Feb 28, 2022 5:56 PM # 
Wait... kissed who's ass? (I'm having trouble following what's going on here.)
Feb 28, 2022 6:15 PM # 
Wait - I thought the IOC kept out of politics ;)
Feb 28, 2022 6:35 PM # 
I'm quite happy that IOC and IOF have made these decisions. I wish FIS (skiing) would take the same stance. Russia have invaded a neighbouring country and threatened the rest of the world with nuclear weapons. Russia (including its citizens) has zero right to participate in global society, period.

Ps. Having Russia compete at the recent Olympics, but representing "Russian Olympic Committee" was a joke.
Feb 28, 2022 8:21 PM # 
"Having Russia compete at the recent Olympics, but representing "Russian Olympic Committee" was a joke.

I completely agree with this, but it is seriously not analogous to the situation in orienteering.

The crux issue is state sponsored cheating/doping, or even non state sponsored cheating/doping in orienteering. If there is evidence of this I would certainly make a difference, but I haven't heard any.

Re the more serious Ukraine situation, I have been impressed by comments and gestures attributed to both sides, recognizing the decency and non-culpability of the citizenry on the other side.
I think we in orienteering are in a position to do the same, and recognizing the"neutral athlete" is at the center of this.

The reason I find this to be a relevant issue is that we (USA) are hosting the World Games in a few months, involving mostly (all?) non Olympic sports.
For many reasons, this issue may turn out to be nothing more than gesturing, but I think we in orienteering should at least be making the best possible moral/ethical/good-sportsmanship gesture.
Feb 28, 2022 8:26 PM # 
The World Games has announced that Russia will not be allowed to compete.
Feb 28, 2022 8:42 PM # 
Feb 28, 2022 8:42 PM # 
There is a big shift in sport politics & clear demonstration of its values. Thumbs up. I hope this is not just one off resolution. I imagine that in the future this will become a norm. I particularly think that one middle east country should be banned as well in near future. World need to solve it after 60y in one way or another. They proved that they couldn't solve it and it is clear that it is even larger military gap between them. It became totally different perspective on how we look on the country and reasons why their athletes are not allowed to compete on the world TV stage. Global non-participation in sport must have its own rubicon.
Feb 28, 2022 9:22 PM # 
Orienteering began as a military training exercise.
Feb 28, 2022 10:22 PM # 
I think it is important that the Council clarifies what is exactly the precedent set because there were incidents before - and there will be in the future - when an IOF member country attacks another one.

How shall the IOF apply a similar ban in the future?
1) Only to Russia attacking Ukraine?
2) Only to Russia attacking another country?
3) Only to a member federation attacking a European country?
4) Only to a member federation attacking under its own flag, but not in a military alliance?
5) All member federations engaged in any war not authorized by the UN under its own flag or in a military alliance?

6) only when the IOF is told recommended to do so by the IOC?
Feb 28, 2022 10:25 PM # 
Should I burn my Russian MTBO team kit?
Mar 1, 2022 12:03 AM # 
Do you all think this is a first time thing?
In 1956 the Soviet Union invaded Hungary to put down an uprising there. Both teams participated in the Melbourne Olympics and all was quiet on the Games front. That is it was quiet until the two men's water polo teams met. Do you know what it feels like to have several days of Hungarian beard growth scrape up against your chest, your back? I don't but I understand that the Russians did. In that case it was the athletes who brough the politics to the Games.
Since then it is mostly the governments taking over.
In 1976 many African countries did not participate in the Montreal Olympics because the Montreal committee did not uninvite the New Zealand team when their rugby team ignored the aparthied ban and played in South Africa against the Sprinboks.

In 1980 most of the so-called western nations did not attend the Olympics in Moscow to protest -get this- the Soviet Union invason of Afghanistan.
In 1984 most of the Soviet bloc countries did not attend the Olympics in Los Angeles. I do not remember their reason but it resulted in a best-ever Olympic results for Canada.
Sports is supposed to be the thing that brings people together in spite of the politics of their nations. That is the way it is supposed to be but the sports organizations are so much dependent on the handouts from their governments that they have no way to step away from the politics of it all.
It is interesting the IOF getting out in front like that but I'm guessing a number of national orienteering federations have been told that they are not to go to any championships where the Russians will be participating.
Mar 1, 2022 12:15 AM # 
South Africa was barred from international competition for years until they ended apartheid.
Pressure on regular people--including athletes--can change a government from inside.
Mar 1, 2022 12:16 AM # 
Soviet led boycott in 1984 was in retaliation for the 1980 boycott.

I'm not in favor of governments using their country's athletes as political pawns and I'm not in favor of athletic federations using their sport's athletes as politcal pawns. This is different from enforcing doping/cheating rules.

I'm not in favor of banning Nepryaeva or Bolshunov from competing because of Putin. I doubt he would care one way or the other. The only people who would be hurt by this is the athletes. And the competitions they would be missing from.

The real solution to decoupling sport from politics is to just have competitions between athletes and stop including national flags, anthems, and government sponsorship.
Mar 1, 2022 1:09 AM # 
@fossil "The real solution to decoupling sport from politics is to just have competitions between athletes and stop including national flags, anthems, and government sponsorship."

Mar 1, 2022 2:06 AM # 
I'm curious if this applies to the World Masters this summer. Of course, by then things could have changed. But it will be difficult for ordinary Russians to travel anywhere outside the country. There were some 50 or so Russians entered, the last time I checked. They may also have trouble getting their entry fees back with the money system blocked.
Mar 1, 2022 2:46 AM # 
Be careful what you wish for, fossil. Any international orienteering competition among the world's best would see hardly anyone from my country. Or yours.
Mar 1, 2022 7:34 AM # 
In all those cases countries themself decided not to participate which is 100% opposite of what happened now. It is IOC and IOF decision. As I see it this decision carry more weights in the eyes of international community. Although RUS athletes are not gilty of anything we as an international communinty need to ban RUS flag. Putin might not care but people of RUS might. FIFA & UEFA excluded RUS national football team and clubs from all of their competitions. Yes, athletes will loose everything they train for but the isolation might be the only legitimate way to support peace. It worth more than gold medal for many athletes.
Mar 1, 2022 7:56 AM # 
Is isolation "the only legitimate way to support peace"?

"Isolating Russia is exactly Putin's plan. The Kremlin would be delighted if we treated all 144 million Russians as its willing collaborators. This is soft North Koreanization, and we ought to do what we can to push back."

from probably the best British analyst of Russia
Mar 1, 2022 8:40 AM # 
I knew "Blood on the Water" would come up eventually.
Mar 1, 2022 9:20 AM # 
No, RUS goverment & media might put that way but ...

I will not say very loud that democracy takes many forms. I can't compare the level of democracy in my coutry with other countries after 30y of democracy. We are still in puberty after all. Some things are better than in so called "democracy leader countries" but many things are still very much the same with one difference: they run under "democracy rules". I just feel that our very soft "dictatorship" from 1945-90 was good for many people in general (if you had mouth shut) but was not economically sustainable system. On the other hand in the democracy the "capital" is also sometimes just the other side of the "dictatorship coin" but the democracy (free elections, freedom of speach, pretection of privacy, responsibilty for actions, legislations, independent judiciary) is in my views a better way to solve current disputes and what people really want than dictatorship. Is RUS too big for democracy is another question?

Are you want to say that Putin is too big (to unpredicted person) to go down quietly? because there are no democracy rules in RUS? Are people afraid to vote for other political option or are there so rigid rules that candidates with different political agenda can't exist (and become political prisoners or eliminated) or even then the "goverment" fake elections anyways. Are you saying that we need to be cerfuel when we are dealing with "soft" dictators? Yes, you might be damn right.
History is written before our eyes and sport is part of it.
Mar 1, 2022 10:47 AM # 
@kofols Apparently you completely missed the source
Mark Galeotti is an Honorary Professor at the UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies, a Senior Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute, and an Associate Fellow in Euro-Atlantic Geopolitics at the Council on Geostrategy.
He knows what he is talking about when it comes to Russia.

I do not want to say, but dislodging Putin by the people would require a revolution comparable to 1917. Currently, 90% of Russians are completely brainwashed. They listen only to Russian state sources (propaganda). The rest is under strict control not seen probably since the 1970s or 1960s. Hoping that severing ties with the few who had international exposure through sport would initiate some sort of change for the better in Russia is a fantasy on an unimaginable scale.

Only Putin's close circle can get rid of him. Any action that does not hit them (e.g. ones against athletes) is futile at best, but most likely counterproductive.
Mar 1, 2022 11:53 AM # 
I agree. Sport is a collateral damage, we all know that. I'm not saying that these decisions can change anything but gives the rest of the world a chance to participate and compete at sport competitions with no bad taste. Any other solution would cause an unpredicted disputes among athletes. I'm glad that athletes would not need to protest... it would be a debacle if RUS play football match and win because the other team would not want to play. It might be counterproductive but that is a dignity that every athlete has the right to demand.
Mar 1, 2022 1:08 PM # 
So, if I understand correctly,
if some athletes or federations may get a "bad taste" or feel the loss of "dignity"
  because other athletes from a different nation participate,
  which nation has some members somewhere that commit despicable actions,
then the athletes who may provoke the feeling of "bad taste" should be excluded
  even if there is absolutely no evidence of any wrongdoing by them
  and even if they also despise those actions committed by some of their compatriots.

Yes, that is one way to promote peace at international events, for sure.
I am just wondering if this preventative action should be restricted to people identified by their nationality, or maybe also applied to people identified by religion or skin pigmentation. There are people around who get "bad taste" from different things.

I am strongly inclined to use sport to promote understanding that might lead even to peace between people who otherwise may hate each other due to the difference in their nationality, religion, or skin pigmentation.
Mar 1, 2022 1:46 PM # 
Exactly. Take for example the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra that includes an equal number of Israeli and Arab musicians. They alone aren't going to solve all the problems of the middle east, but they're using the skills they have to build bridges and not just take for granted what their political leaders are feeding them. Athletic organizations should aspire to this model of seeking peace.
Mar 1, 2022 2:49 PM # 
Halvor Egner Granerud (ski jumping, NOR)
"Granerud believes it is completely wrong for Ukrainian athletes to go home to defend their home country, while Russian athletes compete."

First protest.
Mar 1, 2022 2:53 PM # 
FIS has joined FIFA, IIHF, IOF, and many more International Sports Federations to ban Russian and Belarusian competitors from international elite events.
Mar 1, 2022 4:23 PM # 
And FIS also removed that part of the news of 25 February that said
"The Council unanimously decided that, in line with the IOC recommendations for International Federations, all Russian athletes can participate in all FIS competitions."

Welcome to 1984 :-(

The only difference is that now we can make screenshots.
Mar 1, 2022 4:42 PM # 
This is not about point scoring between sports associations, nor about post- modern student discussions about the philosophy of politics, it is about the Russian Army, today, murdering hundreds of people in their homes in what was their friendliest neighbor. Our radio news has just reported that the Russian Army has started bombing Ukranian museams. This is the direct result of the whim of one weird old man, Vladimer Putin. This will continue until Putin is dead or deposed. The more pressure there is on the Russian population to do that, the quicker it will be over.
Mar 1, 2022 10:08 PM # 
@Tinnishill: I am not sure how much you know about Russia. My feeling is, based on spending some time in Russia now and then, that if you are looking for a path where Western pressure on the Russian population leads to the removal of a Tsar, then you picked a wrong map at the start ;-)
Mar 2, 2022 1:40 AM # 
No one here has rebutted stalas' (Mark Galeotti's) views about this. Is banning athletes from Russia from competing as individuals (without their country or flag or ROC moniker) really going to help? My first reflex was to support the ban, but then I considered stalas' point that it might actually be counterproductive. I am and have been a competitor on the national team of a country that invaded Iraq on false (or most charitably, mistaken) pretenses. I personally opposed this action, and my participation in street protests (at virtually no risk to my own freedom, in contrast with the risks borne by protestors in Russia) and emails of opposition to my legislators made no discernible difference in the course of events. I want to make it clear that my intention is definitely NOT to suggest a moral equivalency between these military actions, just that there is food for thought here on where one ought to draw lines. Anyway, I would hope that if/when lines are drawn, most of the Russian orienteering athletes would be on the side of civilization versus on Putin's side and that this would be symbolically acknowledged in some way. The current scenario could easily send the opposite message.
Mar 2, 2022 2:57 AM # 
I understand you Eric. I was "on the fence" with sporting contact with South Africa, the argument for, being that the contact was a force for change. There's no simple answer.
Mar 2, 2022 6:03 AM # 
Sport does matter, at least to Putin. He waited until the Winter Olympics were over. And he doesn't care about the Paralympics.
Mar 2, 2022 6:55 AM # 
Mar 2, 2022 10:01 AM # 
My theory is that right now, the goal is to isolate Russia as much as possible, to encourage the end of the war, possibly also a change of leadership in Russia. To this end, I accept the pain of all sanctions, and due to my personal situation, I full well know that change in Russia will not happen without very much pain and hardship to the average people.

BUT! As soon as the war in the Ukraine is over, I very much hope that immediate steps and programmes towards rebuilding an empowered people in Russia *and* Ukraine will start - because otherwise I see the danger of a desperate/oppressed people rising to do even more evil things, similar to the Germans after WW1. As an orienteer and musician (well... drummer, but I'm sort of tolerated to hang out with musicians), I will try to keep and strengthen my contacts to Russian and Ukrainian friends.
Mar 3, 2022 12:21 AM # 
Speaking of music, here's something by a Dublin-based Ukrainian -
Mar 3, 2022 1:35 AM # 
@jSh, how sure are we that Russia (Putin) cares about being isolated?
Mar 3, 2022 1:55 AM # 
Looking at historical analogues, perhaps the most significant part of the sporting boycott of South Africa in the apartheid era was that its being lifted consolidated the reform process in South Africa at a delicate stage - in particular, the referendum which effectively ended the remnants of apartheid took place while South Africa were competing (and performing well) at the cricket World Cup, which reminded a lot of voters of what they'd been missing out on.
Mar 3, 2022 2:07 AM # 
Sergey Belyaev’s letter to IOF:Обраще...
Mar 3, 2022 7:50 AM # 
As I see it, the isolation is at least partly there to show to other despots of the world what can and will happen. Not because orienteers or para-atheltes or BMW/iPad buyers would be quilty somehow.
Mar 3, 2022 8:29 AM # 
@Canadian - first we need to understand that Russia is not equal to Putin.
Does Putin care about isolation? Possibly not. (Does he care about anything anymore?)
Do the Russian people care? Very probably yes. My friends and family are very worried and sad already and foresee a very grave future for years to come.
Therefore, among many others, the IOF sanctions will have the effect that the people will hurt, and thus, as unlikely as this may be, encourage change in Russia.

@RUFSO letter to IOF, regarding the statement "never received claims from the IOF for violations or non-compliance with the Charter". While a search on the IOF homepage seems to show the IOF has no Charter of its own, the IOC does, and the IOF has various rules. And I am certain there have been protests upheld for rule breaches, plus I have not forgotten the doping case in 2017 (but the new IOF webpage dropped old news, therefore archive: ).
Mar 3, 2022 10:10 AM # 
Out of interest, how many of the current Russian and Belarusian national squads are at least nominally part of the military in their countries?
Mar 3, 2022 10:35 AM # 
A long article about which int. sports exclude RUS & BLR athletes, judges, sport officials appeared in our national news. It says that RUS is preparing a case for CAS.

Under neutral flag athletes as individuals can still compete in tennis, F1 & moto sports (FIA), cycling, swimming, gymnastics, judo, archery, Taekwondo.

Two international sport federations (fencing & shooting) suspended RUS&BLR athletes although their presidents are two oligarchs connected to Putin circle; Vladimir Lisin & Alisher Usmanov (already resigned).

From the RUFSO letter I understand that IOF beside preventing athletes to compete also terminated the RUS membership in IOF. I think this could be too harsh of a punishment. Maybe IOF just meant to temporarily suspend them and not exclude them. To become member of IOF again is probably time conditioned. I hope this decision will be clarified asap.

But if the whole world go downhill this path (excluding RUS from multinational organizations) with cutting all ties for the time of Putin reign we will end in the two worlds ... even more hostile than in the cold war times.

I hope IOF could already say what are the conditions under which athletes will be welcome back again. Is this possible when war stop and peace agreement is set or is based on change of the political goverment in RUS.
Mar 3, 2022 12:49 PM # 
I think you'd find that in addition to being under the neutral flag, Russian athletes would need to denounce the invasion before many athletes from other countries would play against them. I would have hoped to see some sentiment at least expressing disappointment and non-support for Putin's decision to invade Ukraine in the Russian Federation's letter to IOF. I'd also hope that CAS will ignore any Russian petition against any sport's decision to exclude Russia.
Mar 3, 2022 12:51 PM # 
Hi @kofols, the terminate vs suspend-question could quite simply be solved by looking at the IOF homepage:
The suspension is announced to be "for an indefinite period of time" - note indefinite means "at this time unknown", *not* infinite = "forever".

@hillanddale - sadly, the distinction might not be so clear-cut. I know of some ski-o athletes who are employed by "sports universities" that are close enough to military to allow them to take part in CISM, but otherwise lead a civilian life. So where does one draw the line? Paramilitary sports are quite widespread in Russia, maybe you would like to read about the "Dynamo"-clubs in many cities, starting point
Mar 3, 2022 1:20 PM # 
Publicly denouncing Putin's actions may be much too dangerous for a Russian.
Mar 3, 2022 1:29 PM # 
As apparently are Norwegian ski fans. The FIS ban on Russian athletes only happened after FIS was bullied strongly encouraged by the Norwegian federation to adopt it for "the safety of the athletes". This in advance of this weekend's big Holmenkollen World Cup races. Add to that the fact that the women's overall World Cup and the men's distance World Cup are currently led by Russian athletes and one might start to wonder about the motivation of the Norwegian federation.
Mar 3, 2022 2:59 PM # 
I remember the tensions during the CISM World Military Orienteering Championship in Austria in 2014, following Russia's takeover of Crimea.

The Russian delegation seemed isolated. Russian athletes won medals, and other athletes refused to salute when the Russian national anthem was played at the medal ceremonies.

The Russian Chief of Mission was older, and spoke neither English nor German. He and the Chinese Chief of Mission tagged along at the back of the group on the rest day's cultural tour for the COMs. I had studied Russian, so I finally struck up a conversation with the Russian COM, and we had a good time talking together. By the end-of-competition celebration, he sought me out for a toast and to share the sentiment that while our leaders might not see eye to eye, "the Russian people and the American people, we understand each other."

I make no statement about the actions of political leaders or of sporting bodies in sharing this. I am torn about whether sport should be an avenue for cooperation or a lever for influence. But I think it's important to remember that we are talking about individuals, and painting groups of people with our assumptions about their beliefs and motivations is not likely to improve our ability to relate to each other in a positive way.
Mar 3, 2022 4:22 PM # 
Perhaps recently promoted Captain Alexander Bolshunov can go fulfill his national military duties now, the same way that Julia Dzhima and Dmitry Pidrushkin are fulfilling theirs.
Mar 3, 2022 5:00 PM # 
@jSh, apologies - I do absolutely understand that. I guess I meant does Putin can about Russia being isolated. I only have a layperson's understanding of Russia but my gut instinct says he is perfectly ok with Russia being a global pariah. The Russian people are a different matter. Nonetheless understanding that dynamic is surely an important piece of knowledge to answer the questions as to whether or not various sanctions, both those against the government and oligarchs and those against the people might have a positive effect.

I don't pretend to know the answers.
Mar 3, 2022 5:53 PM # 
Yes, one must assume that even if he probably never foresaw the "special operation" to go as badly as it currently seems to be going, he surely calculated with a certain level of isolation. However probably he assumed it would be half-hearted and short-lived similar to 2014 after the Crimea takeover.
Mar 3, 2022 8:51 PM # 
I read IOF news again. I'm still a little bit confused about this part "suspends the membership of its Russian member"

Does legal consequences includes also suspension of GA voting rights? From the news I guess that's included otherwise why would IOF suspend their membership.
Mar 4, 2022 5:01 AM # 
International Feline Federation Bans Russian Cats From All Competitions
Mar 4, 2022 7:54 AM # 
I've stopped eating russian fudge.
Mar 4, 2022 12:12 PM # 
@Canadian: Only the sanctions against oligarchs might work. Russian people have as much of a chance to change the system as Chinese or North Koreans.
Mar 4, 2022 12:13 PM # 
Some reflections: War Hate Peace

It is dangerous to talk about Peace when a barbaric mad War waged by a few results in an indiscriminate Hatred against many.

In this post, I would like to show that the IOF used to be above politics even during confrontations between member federations. Now it has become a vehicle for Putin’s plan of hate. Even worse, the Council appears to act without considering the future. Let’s face it, for many IOF countries the involvement in a war is not a question of IF, but WHEN. And then what?

Will our sport no longer act as a bridge for peace above politics but as a tool of punishment – as and when political fashions demand so?
Mar 4, 2022 2:19 PM # 
@ jj - Russian scientists have signed an open letter condemning the war. They probably have a lot more to lose than ordinary Russian citizens, and certainly more to lose than high profile Russian sportspersons who are based outside Russia and rarely visit.

@ stalas - IOF is a very minor player when compared to all the major sports which have sanctioned Russia, so using IOF's action in this case to further your one-man campaign against IOF Council seems rather pointless.
Mar 4, 2022 4:34 PM # 
@simmo Sorry, I am interested in the IOF, not other sports organisations. My bad.
But are you implying that the IOF had no choice to decide as a "very minor player"?
Mar 4, 2022 10:41 PM # 
I play an online orienteering game called Torus, which has hundreds of competitors from lots of countries. Russian “athletes” have just been banned from competing.

I get the logic on a rational level, but emotionally it feels a little weird. I hope somehow it helps to make a difference.
Mar 5, 2022 11:38 AM # 
What's the logic in excluding athletes for no other reason than they have the same nationality as a raging madman? Isn't that quintessential racism?

The US/NATO has thrown Ukraine under the bus. They were interested only as long as they could use the people to poke at the eye of the bear. Now the bear is out of control. It commits horrific crimes. The US/NATO was quick to declare that they do not want to be anywhere near because that might have consequences on them.

And people are taking it out on the Russian athletes who now face up to 15 years in prison for just saying that there is war, not a peacekeeping operation.

What's the logic at a rational level?
Mar 5, 2022 5:46 PM # 
Well the logic on a rational level is presumably that by adding ever more sanctions at all levels (including banning Russian athletes, restricting Russian airlines, cutting off banks, brands leaving the country etc) you hope that ordinary Russians will see more clearly that their president is causing a lot of pain, and eventually somehow get rid of him.

Whether that actually happens of course is another matter. I certainly am happy to be living in Western Europe right now.
Mar 5, 2022 10:16 PM # 
The IOF could have made the same initial decision as the IPC (Paralympic), which left far more athletes unable to compete, for whatever reason, than those that were banned. Instead the IPC reversed their decision, perhaps benefitting some Russian athletes who found themselves caught up in something they could not kick back against.
Mar 5, 2022 10:42 PM # 
Yes, the IOF could have stuck to principles of 60 years (sport is above politics), but these days that approach is probably commercially unaffordable.

What do you mean by "perhaps benefitting some Russian athletes who found themselves caught up in something they could not kick back against"?
Mar 5, 2022 11:01 PM # 
Their athletes aren't free to show opposition to their government, nor drop out of a team without good sporting reasons if they feel they shouldn't compete.
Mar 5, 2022 11:32 PM # 
You are right that Russian athletes aren't free to show opposition to their government, nor drop out of a team without good sporting reasons.

But what makes you believe that Russian athletes see non competing as the right way to protest against their government?

The Russian (and earlier the Soviet) athletes I met were always adamant that one should leave politics at home when attending a sports event.
Mar 6, 2022 7:07 AM # 
What sanctions? Or do you mean the special operation of the west to secure Russian economy?
Mar 6, 2022 8:36 AM # 
Agreed, some athletes might prefer not to compete but my guess is few would want to, preferring as you say to leave politics at home.

I was fortunate to be selected to run in the junior GB team at the Hungarian 5 day in the mid-70s, which was reciprocated by supporting Hungarian teams coming to GB in the lead up to WOC in GB in 76. They were wonderful generous hosts, providing training maps and a sightseeing trip. Not only did we get to talk to our hosts but many other east European orienteers. Politics and the effects on their economy did come when alone, which was educational for someone still at school. Got to run against the Russians at the 1979 World Students Champs, I believe an early occasion when they fielded teams in an open world champs. Remember the glum middle aged chaperones, sorry teams managers. Didn't get a chance to mix with them though.
Mar 6, 2022 9:54 AM # 
I have contacts with an O club in Ukraine. I won't name their club or their town to protect their identity. Since the attack started the O club has been organizing a daily phone roll call of their members. Yesterday about 20 percent didn't check in.

The youth team of a neighboring club was at a youth O festival in Western Europe when the attack started. Again I am not naming team or host country to protect their identities. Those children are now looking at spending the rest of their lives as refugees. Their (orienteering) parents are trying to make their own way out to join the children.

One elderly club member I know expresses the intention to die in her own home. Today, now, while we are whining on about IOF regulation and the theories of sanctions, the Russian Army are murdering random civilians.
Mar 6, 2022 11:16 AM # 
@Tinnishill Do two wrongs make a right?
How will the IOF's discrimination against Russian athletes (based purely on being Russian) will help Ukrainian victims and stop the Russian Army from murdering random civilians?
Mar 6, 2022 1:20 PM # 
Zelensky just made another emotional plea half an hour ago.
(yes, I follow him, and yes, my Ukrainian is good enough to understand him)

He desperately asked again for a no-fly zone so that they could defend themselves on the ground. He was clear: without a no-fly zone they are condemned by world leaders to a slow death. He did not ask for racial discrimination against Russians.

US/NATO was clear that there would be no no-fly zone because that would mean engaging the Russians, who might well shoot back. Their thoughts and prayers are with the Ukrainians.

So, let's ban all Russian athletes for being Russian!
That is safe. They won't shoot back.
Mar 6, 2022 2:38 PM # 
Stalas we are not just individuals with no empathy for others. A word, a stance, a moral support is important. Russian athletes might be disappointed but as long as the war continues they don't have a place in int. competitions. If it were otherwise we would all be seen as we don't care about Ukrainian athletes at all. I think that in war times this is the right decision.

In orienteering athletes compete under national teams which is a little bit different than in cycling where athletes at the mayor events compete in the name of the clubs so they don't represent their country directly. Also UCI ban Russians from world championships.

If things work the same in orienteering the Russian athletes might compete at TioMila, Jukola or similar events where they don't represent RUS or Russian o-club.
Mar 6, 2022 2:49 PM # 
O is quite a big sport here, I am not sure can I even imagine the size of the local shitstorms scandi O federations would create by being the only sport not bannig.
Mar 6, 2022 4:01 PM # 
@Jagge I fully appreciate that argument. I know very well how that works.
When everybody hates [NAME of a "popular" ethnic group or religion], then it is dangerous not to join, or God forbid, argue that most of them are innocent humans.

@kofols Ukrainians were fairly clear. What they need is not "moral support", but a no-fly zone over Ukraine and only NATO could deliver that.
Chances are that most of the readers of this blog are from NATO countries.
What do you think, how many of them support the ban of Russian athletes vs how many would support a NATO enforced no-fly zone over Ukraine?
Mar 6, 2022 4:28 PM # 
I said a "moral support" which is what any individual can do with publicly without any obligation. If anyone can do more (protest, give shelter to refugess, etc) is welcome.
Your question is simply a provocation. You don't wish a WWIII. It is a tragic situation but please try to find other examples where sports values should be respected among different nations. At the end U.S. and Russia will need to decide what is in the future in the best interest of Russia, Ukraine and the whole Europe.

One of our war analyst said that the compromise could be that nuclear weapon is forbidden in easteren NATO countries (which is not that bad) and demilitarization of Ukraine. If Ukraine future is democracy (among EU nations) or under Russian rule is still open.
Mar 6, 2022 4:30 PM # 
A few days ago the Danish O' Federation published a letter from head of the Urkainian Orienteering Federation. It is worth adding to the discussion:

And here is a direct link the the Ukrainian OF letter to the IOF on February 24:
Mar 6, 2022 5:13 PM # 
I did not know Putin's administration scani federations seem to dislikes is a ethnc group. As far as I know our dear russian club members and friends are still welcomed and are still training in our camps and trainings. Just not chasing wre points for now.
Mar 6, 2022 8:59 PM # 
@Spike It is absolutely great when people support the Ukrainian orienteers.

I am just wondering if you could explain how could the Ukrainian Orienteering Federation claim on 24 February, i.e. on Day 1 (!) of the Russian attack, that all Russian athletes were collectively guilty of “supporting Putin’s aggression when they were silent” and that they “pretended not to notice the violence”?

I found this speed rather strange. Don't you?

@Jagge So, what is the basis of banning the Russian Orienteering Federation from IOF events and not allowing Russian athletes to participate in major IOF events?
What would be the reason for the "shitstorms scandi O federations would create"?
IOF could not find any specifics beyond being Russian.

@kofols Your logic is valid: to avoid WW III, Ukrainians are left by NATO to die a slow death unless they accept a decision by the USA and Russia on what should be their fate. But then what's the point of a "moral support" that bans the Russian athletes whose only fault is that they are Russian.
Mar 6, 2022 9:40 PM # 
so when all other sports follow IOC guidelines and make a clear stand against russian authorities you suggest O federations should not do the same but insted continue business as usual. And then you ask what might be the reason for the shitstorm. Well, maybe you should try figuring that our by yourself.
Mar 6, 2022 10:49 PM # 
Apparently, the distinction between Russian authorities and Russian athletes is extremely difficult for many, though not for all sports.

There is a tricky bit though.
The IOF's statutes do not give any authority to the IOC over the IOF's internal dealings. IOC recommendations have no legal weight whatsoever. So, what's the legal basis for excluding Russian and Belorussian athletes? Because the IOF was told so?
Mar 7, 2022 1:46 AM # 
Correct me if I'm wrong but I think the IOF Council debated the issue and took a vote. Does their decision somehow violate the IOF statutes? Personally, I have a strong feeling that if the IOF statutes spelled out in precise language a limited set of circumstances that could justify suspending the membership of a national federation and explicitly stated that memberships could never be suspended unless every jot and tittle of one of those circumstances were fulfilled, stalas would be quoting the relevant statutory language to us.
Mar 7, 2022 2:35 AM # 
Politics always trumps the law during the periods of war or revolution. Things like private property rights, copyright, patent laws, intellectual property etc. --everything is secondary during wartime. Right now it is all-but-hot-war between Russia and NATO (just one little step left).
Mar 7, 2022 7:28 AM # 
Stalas, beyond moral support and what we could do is to ask our leaders (politics from U.S., Europe, UN) that they demand a ceasefire and take a flight to Moscow and be there until they find a solution for peace.
Mar 7, 2022 1:05 PM # 
Ceasefires have been declared and then ignored by the Russian army.
Mar 7, 2022 1:39 PM # 
Post only for stalas

A very stupid way of showing which country he represents. He might be just a Russian athlete "whose only fault is that he is Russian" and wore a jersey prepared by the coach. Organizer's mistake not preventing? Personal decision? Who knows? I hope he will get another chance to compete one day.
Mar 7, 2022 5:00 PM # 
@kofols This guy deserved to have the kitchen sink thrown at him, no question. Idiots who do stupid things should be punished as individuals for doing what they did.
But the IOF Council punished all Russian and Belarusian athletes for no other reason than being Russian and Belarusian. That just does not look right.
Mar 7, 2022 5:09 PM # 
While I find the insistence with which @stalas is making this point somewhat off-putting, he is right that natural justice requires that there be some line here that's not effectively a racist one. For example, this NYT article - - is about a Russian filmmaker with Ukrainian roots, who has publicly protested against the war, and is still being dropped by a Scottish film festival anyway.

I don't pretend to know the answer and the whole question is difficult. Maybe the line should be to cancel Russian athletes from any event where they would compete as national teams - clearly the 'Olympic Athletes from Russia' not being 'Russia' is silly. So, that says, drop Russian athletes from WOC but not, say, from any other country's domestic races.

(I don't want to get into the argument here, so I'm not going to post again, but nuance is a bit in short supply here.)
Mar 7, 2022 5:16 PM # 
@JaneIT It is despicable when things like that happen. But what do the Russian, and in particular the Belarusian athletes have to do with that?
Mar 7, 2022 5:20 PM # 
@feet The question is whether IOF decisions are based on rules or on some sort of a "righteousness" as interpreted by the Council at any given moment.
I'd like to believe in the rule of the law.
Mar 7, 2022 5:26 PM # 
@jtorranc One can download the IOF Statutes from here

3.3.2 The IOF General Assembly may decide to expel a member that fails to meet its Statutory obligations, its financial obligations, or that violates the IOF Statutes or other policies and rules issued by the IOF. If necessary, the IOF Council may immediately deprive an offending member of its membership rights or impose temporary limitations upon the exercise of its rights.

That is fine, but the IOF Council did not specify any wrongdoing by the Russian or the Belarusian Federations. That is not fine.

Being suspended/expelled without a specific offence immediately cuts off the way for readmission, because

3.3.3 A member that has been expelled under 3.3.2 may only be re-admitted to the IOF when it has complied with its undertakings.

There is no way whatsoever for the Russian and Belarusian federations to comply if they do not know what did they do wrong.
Mar 7, 2022 9:36 PM # 
I really don't know whether this is a case where sport can or should be a lever.

Back home, there is a clamour to "expel the Russian ambassador". I wonder if we should instead force him to stay, and rub his nose in democracy.
Mar 7, 2022 9:59 PM # 
Sandor, I hope you realize that you are like the insane uncle that ruins family get togethers. We get it, everyone here knows what your point is, you can shut your mouth now because nobody wants to hear it anymore. You will eventually "win" this argument because most normal people who want to keep their mental health will eventually just tell you "ok, Sandor, you are right". Note that this doesn't mean that they agree with you, it means that they just want you to finally be quiet because they longer want to interact with crazy, angry, toxic people.
Mar 7, 2022 10:06 PM # 
"A similar truce was endorsed by the U.N. for the recent Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Beijing and was due to expire on March 20, 2022. It is for breaching this truce that Russia was sanctioned by the world’s sporting bodies."
Mar 8, 2022 7:25 AM # 
Stalas are you hoped that IOF would take a similar stand?

Some sports officials have broken character to make it this week. World Athletics president Sebastian Coe, in announcing a ban on Russian and Belarusian track and field athletes, acknowledged that sanctions “appear to be the only peaceful way to disrupt and disable Russia’s current intentions and restore peace.” He said that “sport has to step up and join these efforts,” and that, although he’d usually rail against the politicization of sport, “this is different.”
Mar 8, 2022 6:05 PM # 
@kofols I am surprised that you did not quote the following on the undeniable hypocrisy of the IOC and the sports federations:

"In a vacuum, it’s a logical argument. But as Bank points out: “I think people would probably say that's hypocritical.” They’d point to any number of human rights violations that FIFA not only failed to address but implicitly abetted. They’d point to the 2018 and 2022 men’s World Cups, held in Russia and Qatar, as events that cleanse the images of regimes that stand accused of countless rights violations.

Some have also pointed to other wars, such as the Syrian civil war or the United States’ invasion of Iraq, that were internationally condemned but never addressed by FIFA."
Mar 8, 2022 6:24 PM # 
@J$ You are right. Honest. It is time I stop this discussion.

There are just too many wrongs with the decision of the IOF Council from violating its own rules, through denying basic rights of the accused, to condemning it on a racial basis. People not particularly interested in understanding what is going on (especially across the pond) keep their mental health and their belief in the unquestionable ethics of their institutions through seeking moral support from people who share the contradicted beliefs. It is quintessential cognitive dissonance.

You are right, there is a point where it makes no sense to discuss things any longer. Members of a congregation of true believers will get only annoyed when somebody argues that the actions of their priests might not be as righteous as they would like to believe.
Mar 8, 2022 7:10 PM # 
I'm not sure that "FIFA didn't do anything before" is a good argument. Instead, it could easily be argued that FIFA should have done something when the US invaded Iraq, and should do so for future US transgressions.
Mar 8, 2022 7:17 PM # 
Terje Mathisen:
@stalas, you continue to impress me for a single reason: Persistence.
Everything you actually write paints you as either ignorant or a troll. :-(
Yes, FIFA (and most of IOC) being horribly corrupt does not mean that IOF should aim for the worst parts of those organizations, but rather try to be a good example.

In more "primitive" societies they didn't have the death penalty, the perpetrator would instead be shunned, effectively dead to the group and forced to leave. This is the penalty the world is trying to impose on Russia for starting this war, but here Russia does have to option of eventually being allowed back into international trade & organizations.
Mar 8, 2022 7:46 PM # 
You are right again, Sandor. I am a fan of skiing and biathlon, so I will use those athletes as examples. Us here in the west, me in Canada specifically, are gigantic hypocrites because poor Russian army Capitan Alexander Bolshunov is happily training for next season but couldn't compete at Holmenkollen this year regardless of whether or not he does or doesn't support Putin. He is much, much worse off than Yevhen Maylshev, the 19 year old Ukranian Biathlete who was killed in action. This makes us racists, again me specifically. I am a giant, hypocritical racist, and I don't care.

So my congratulations, you win. So can you please shut your mouth now. Nobody wants to hear your bullshit anymore.
Mar 8, 2022 7:48 PM # 
"Some sports officials have broken character to make it this week. World Athletics president Sebastian Coe..."

...who has been a politician for almost 30 years, and was a member of the upper house of the UK Parliament for the governing party until January 2022.

(I don't dispute your basic point - I'm just not sure that Lord Coe is the best example of someone breaking character.)
Mar 8, 2022 8:29 PM # 
That is the beauty of democracy. No one is preventing you to have an opinion, no one will send a police after you. If you think we deserve a better IOF council the members will have a chance to address this issue at GA, or vote for other more moral persons next time. Maybe even this council could propose some changes. Democracy is not a static social order. If there are legal holes we can expect that new rules will be addopted in the future. And if Russians believe in democracy they could appel to CAS. If they win I can live with that.

But... you still think our consciousness should follow only rules no matter what majority of people feel about what is the right decision in extraordinary events. We rely on moral values in the past but as you pointed out and was written in the articles our international sport institutions including IOC, FIFA were not moral enough to condem the similar situations in the past. To say that we are hypocritical is quite harsh. I would say that each case is different, but yes we finally found out that we need clearer rules. The problem is that nations see democracy differently. We have cultural differences which prevent us to see rules in the same way and what is right and what is wrong. So you are looking on what IOF should do only thru your values which are more of a legislative nature. Sometimes in a democracy legislative nature is not enough, not predicted in the rules, not the right decision, not humane so we need to rely more on our consciousness. Is war in Ukraine in this category? I will say yes. Do Russian athletes deserve this? No. It is our consciousness that tells us that IOF decision is more right then wrong and not to intentionally violating non-existent or unclear rules. I hope Russians will go to CAS so we get an independent substance for our discussion on how to make IOF rules better in the future. Democracy wins! Can you live with that?
Mar 9, 2022 12:13 AM # 
J$, believe me when I say I am sympathetic to your position and your emotions. That said, you do not speak for all of AP and I certainly don't need your protection. Shouting people down and censoring are some of the things I think we are all fighting against.
Mar 9, 2022 12:25 AM # 
Nobody is obligated to read this thread.
Mar 9, 2022 2:24 AM # 
Speak for yourself! I can’t help myself! ;)
Mar 9, 2022 4:17 AM # 
@stalas, during a war the concept of "fairness" does not apply. One must take a side: you are either one of us, or against us (c). FDR once said about a brutal dictator from Central America: "He may be a bastard, but he is our bastard."

Here is some Number Theory for you:
09/01/1939: 09+01+19+39=68

07/28/1914: 07+28+19+14=68

Now try February 24, 2022
Mar 9, 2022 9:58 AM # 
A Ukrainian mathematician friend has gone
- from position: Scientists working in the Russian Federation should be ostracised
- to position: They need to be rescued.

The state apparatus includes sporting bodies and does deserve severe sanctions. We can still welcome and support individuals.

This year's ICM was due to be held in St Petersburg, a dubious decision in the first place ( ). In 1966, it was held in Moscow. is highly recommended.
Mar 9, 2022 10:26 AM # 
ndobbs, that Springer-article seems to cost 37.40 Euro for me here in GER.
I mostly accept paywalls for good content, but that is a little steep for me...
Mar 9, 2022 10:41 AM # 
Oh bizarre, I get it for free... Please don't pay that! Maybe via google scholar?
Smale - On the steps of Moscow University.
Mar 9, 2022 11:08 AM # 
Uncle JiM:
only 34.95 Euro in Aus ;)
Mar 9, 2022 12:24 PM # 
$39.95 in USA
Mar 9, 2022 3:07 PM # 
@igoup. If Mr Talas has some other point of view on this issue besides "hurr, durr the west are hypocritical racists because they banned athletes from Russia and Belarus even though they might not themselves personally support Putin, and yet Americans weren't banned even though there really wasn't any WMD in Iraq" then I am happy to hear it. If, however, that continues to be the main thesis of his argument, then I think we all understand it by now, and we don't need to be told that again.
Mar 9, 2022 4:42 PM # 
Just stop reading the thread.
Mar 10, 2022 12:44 AM # 
@igoup No worries. I am used to the J$ types. Russian forums are full of them. The only difference is that there they are praising Putin's actions and calling people "toxic" if they dare to say that there is a war in Ukraine and not a peacekeeping special operation.

It is interesting though to see when a bully is macho enough to call out others on irl names, while bravely hiding his own.
Mar 10, 2022 12:50 AM # 
@ndobbs That is in line with the thoughts of Mark Galeotti's view as I mentioned above, though the best would be if they could remain in Russia as ambassadors of Western values, or at least bridges for communication.

"Isolating Russia is exactly Putin's plan. The Kremlin would be delighted if we treated all 144 million Russians as its willing collaborators. This is soft North Koreanization, and we ought to do what we can to push back."
Mar 10, 2022 1:46 AM # 
“It don't stop
And it won't stop
And it don't stop
It don't stop, it won't stop
It don't stop
And it won't stop
And it don't stop
It don't stop, it won't stop”
Mar 10, 2022 10:58 AM # 
@J$ stalas substantive argument seems to be that:

1/ If IOF suspends a member federation, IOF should also say what the member did wrong and what they can do to fix it.

2/ More generally, the Russian motivation for invasion is driven by their perception that the rest of the world is ganging up on them. This perception may be wrong, but if we want it to change then suspending the federation is counterproductive.
Mar 10, 2022 11:21 AM # 
Before FIS did the decision WC organizing club in Norway told they will quit if team R is allowed to participates. Östersund municipality told they will not let ski WC use ski tracks on their property, also finding any sponsors was impossible so race got cancelled. The decision by FIS stopped lots of arguing, fighting, bans, boycotts and loosing sponsors from happenning. Much cleaner this way. Not sure how badly that FIS decission is against their rules, but it is just good if it is clearly violating something, beause it makes healing easier when this all is over (if it ever is). Everyone will have a reason to be sorry and they all can blame some FIS people and some of them can even be made to resign.
Mar 10, 2022 12:17 PM # 
Russia is now in the process of getting out of European institutions. The Earth has become too small.
Mar 11, 2022 6:57 AM # 
Mar 11, 2022 4:50 PM # 
On the upside, it's nice to see that what should have happened after the McLaren report is finally happening...
Mar 12, 2022 11:13 AM # 
@Nixon Are you saying that Russian (and Belarusian) orienteers were aided by state-sponsored organised doping?
I do not recall any reference to orienteering in the McLaren report.
Mar 15, 2022 12:32 AM # 
Think about this. How would you feel right now, with Russia viciously attacking the people of Ukraine, of hearing their anthem and seeing their flags waved at world events? Personally, I absolutely do not want to hear their anthem played or seeing their flag. I have no problem with Russians or Belarusians competing as individuals. Since world events are countries competing against each other, this makes events like WOC absolutely political.
Mar 15, 2022 12:54 AM # 
Nixon Are you saying that ..

I think he is saying something like this
Mar 15, 2022 9:48 AM # 
-1 @yurets

I think he is just saying something like "deputinacization"
Mar 15, 2022 7:41 PM # 
@Ruth So you agree with stalas. Because there were no Russian teams or flags or anthems in WOC2021. The new WOC2022 announcement only changes the position for Russians competing as individuals...

Russian orienteering athletes, in all IOF disciplines, will not be allowed to participate in IOF events. Athletes will also not be allowed to participate as neutral athletes.
Mar 15, 2022 7:56 PM # 
In the last three weeks the Russian state has had thousands of people murdered in cold blood. The rate and frequency of cold blooded murder by the Russian state is increasing.

Despite Putin being elected with massive majorities not all Russians support his policy. Thousands of Russians have fled the country fearing arrest. Thousands more have been arrested. The Russian Orthodox church communities in western Europe are collecting money to help Ukrainian refugees. My friends who have family in Russia tell me that the older members of the population heavily buy in to Putin’s racist ideas of “Greater Russia”. Anyone who accepts any sort of Russian national organisational appointment must also accept Putin’s vision for the world.

This will soon affect all of us. Fuel, heating and food costs are going to increase massively, inflation is going to run out of control.

The central European countries have already taken in nearly 3 million refugees and expect up to 7 million. Those central European countries need help.

Yesterday BOF emailed their members with an appeal to take in Ukrainian refugees who are orienteers; every other civil organisation of any kind could do similar.

The Ukrainian people need weapons, ammunition, medical aid and food; only our national governments can provide that.

The Russian people need access to uncensored news and information.

What can we do ? We could all be lobbying for our local political leaders to help. Trying to pretend that it is still business as usual in international sport isn’t going to work.
Mar 16, 2022 9:09 AM # 
@Tinnishill "The Russian people need access to uncensored news and information."

That is exactly the area where maintaining sports contacts was essential in Soviet times. I am afraid, sports might be one of the few areas that would allow maintaining human contacts in the years to come. Severing personal contacts allowed by sports is a major mistake if the intention is to establish peace.
Mar 17, 2022 9:29 AM # 
@Tinnishill, while I fully agree with nearly all your summary, there's one bit I disagree with: "Despite Putin being elected with massive majorities".

I think it can be said with certainty that those elections are massively rigged.
Mar 18, 2022 11:29 AM # 
Just FYI: CAS rejects the Football Union of Russia’s request
Mar 19, 2022 10:18 PM # 
This will be an interesting case of arbitration when it starts. According to Inside the Games "The RFU believes that FIFA and UEFA did not have a legal basis when deciding on the removal of Russian teams. It violated the fundamental rights of the RFU as a member of FIFA and UEFA, including the right to take part in competitions violated the principle of sports and the rules of fair play."

The IOF Council has also violated several of its own rules when the Russian and Belarusian athletes were excluded. The CAS decision regarding FIFA and UEFA will provide interesting guidance on the applicability of the rule of the law in sports.
Mar 22, 2022 12:53 PM # 
Mr Wonderful:
Here and Now guest Derek Thompson of The Atlantic when asked about Russian sports and cats. This portion starts around timestamp 4:44.

"It is for that reason I am becoming concerned that a financial and commercial boycott is bleeding into a cultural boycott that has no moral justification."
Jun 21, 2022 9:25 AM # 
Orienteering refugees report;
Jun 21, 2022 2:06 PM # 
Related to this thread, did anyone else notice TioMila's policy re Russian athletes?
Sorry I wasn't able to link it up today, but at the time of the event it struck me as enlightened, in striking contrast to the IOF's policy.
Granted TioMila is dealing with a different situation (clubs vs countries) but at least they seemed to put a little time and thinking into their policy.
Jun 21, 2022 3:49 PM # 
Old news but Russia dropped its appeal against the FIFA exclusion some time ago. Other appeals pending:
Jun 21, 2022 6:34 PM # 
@Tinnishill that is an amazing story about the Ukrainian orienteer - so very sad about her coach.
Jun 21, 2022 8:19 PM # 
@jwolff I believe Russia has dropped its appeal specifically in relation to the 2022 Men's (Football) World Cup qualifying process. The appeal against the more general suspension by FIFA is still pending.
Jun 22, 2022 12:48 PM # 
"21 Jun 2022 19:34 # 
@Tinnishill that is an amazing story about the Ukrainian orienteer - so very sad about her coach."

There is an account of the murder of O coach Oleksandr Sheremet towards the end of this news report. Be aware that it is a distressing read.
Jun 22, 2022 2:04 PM # 
Some more about Sheremet on his club's facebook page. As I mentioned at the time of his murder, he was very active supporting the UK team.О-Весна-1139388886116666/
Jun 23, 2022 8:00 AM # 
Thank you Tinnishill, I will share this with members of my club.
Jun 24, 2022 4:37 PM # 
Just some reflections on the process before the General Assembly votes on the suspensions on 1 July.

In this suspension process, the IOF Council violated the Statutes, the Code of Ethics, and several core principles of due process required in civilized democratic environments. The IOF Ethics Panel helped this process by turning a blind eye to the violation of the Code of Ethics by the Council. This case gave a feeling of elements of historic lynching exercised in the US South and feudal despotism, but not of a democratic process of the civilized world.

Will the General Assembly approve the multiple, deliberate, and blatant violations of the Statutes and the Code of Ethics by the Council? Or will it stand up for the Rule of Law within the IOF?
Jun 24, 2022 11:20 PM # 
The things you write don't become less silly just because you post them in several places here, stalas.
Jun 25, 2022 9:39 AM # 
And since the earlier posts on this thread we have learnt exactly why Russia has been, and should be excluded from ALL international sporting events and organisations. The catalogue of war crimes is mounting, and until all charges have been judged and appropriately punished, Russia should not be allowed back.

Murder, rape, bombing of schools, cultural buildings and apartments and houses, indiscriminate use of mass and banned weapons, destroying factories and farmlands, and stealing their production, it goes on and on. And all the while Putin lies to the world and to his people who blindly follow him - including many, many elite sportsmen and women.
Jun 25, 2022 12:45 PM # 
That is the philosophy of lynching when the Rule of Law does not matter: a black person / a Russian / an Italian commits a crime and the good folks take it out on a black person / a Russian / an Italian they can put their hands on with complete disregard to the laws and rules of civilized society.
Of course, all in the name of Justice.
Aug 24, 2022 6:16 PM # 

list of ukrainian athletes killed in a war by russians. there are 3 o-runners here. Oleg Lenjuk, Oleksandr Sheremet, Oleksandr Tepenchak.

i know about 2 victiums Sergei Polishchuk (trail runner & adventure races) & Anton Nikolaev (coach) additionaly.
Aug 25, 2022 11:34 AM # 
Terje Mathisen:
Banning Russian athletes due to Putin's war in Ukraine is of course mostly punishing people who had and has nothing to with the war. However, since Putin does seem to place a bit emphasis on Russian sports results, this might actually be something that has the potential to help.
Aug 28, 2022 2:37 AM # 
Potential to help? Whom does it help and how?
Aug 28, 2022 5:54 AM # 
Helps me get a higher placing at WMTBOC.
Oct 23, 2022 8:38 PM # 
Russian O-Federation during the meeting executive committee at 6th of October 2022 decide:
1. to found local federation on occupied territories and accept somebody as a member. They tell that found several people from territories occupied before 24th of February and nobody from new occupied territories.
2. to oblige all local federations about to make a list of orienteering specialist who can help to train solders and in navigation.

link, text in Russian:
Oct 23, 2022 9:46 PM # 
I appreciate that this information was posted. Can somebody provide a more understandable translation of point #1?
Oct 23, 2022 11:53 PM # 
Presumably territories occupied before 24th of Feb means Crimea.
Oct 24, 2022 12:03 AM # 
A quick scan turned up a term I understand as "citizen" rather than "soldier" (граждан) for the part related to #2. Am I missing something in translation?

2.2.Руководителям региональных федераций сформировать из тренеров, педагогов, специалистов, спортивных судей и спортсменов группы волонтеров для обеспечения процесса обучения граждан навыкам ориентирования на незнакомой местности.

Ah, probably a reference to this section at the top of part 2 about the role of citizens - it's about military operations, not competition. (Just copy and paste into Google Translate, it's pretty decent):

Минспорте России под руководством заместителя Министра спорта Байсултанова Одеса Хасаевича прошло совещание с представителями федераций прикладных видов спорта на предмет оказания помощи в бучении граждан профильным навыкам, которые необходимы во время специальной военной операции на Украине. Мы должны дать предложения в перечень мероприятий по подготовке и проведению учебных мероприятий. Обучение должно пройти на безвозмездной основе.
Горин В.В. Мы обязаны оказать помощь, тем более что на практике занимаемся обучением спортсменов ориентированию.
Свирь А.В. В первую очередь нужно решить вопрос с картографическим материалом, его размножением и наличием достаточного количества компасов.
Кудряшов Н.Н. В основе обучения должно быть несколько практических занятий на местности с картами того масштаба, который будет использован пешими вооруженными
Елизаров В.Л. Обучать могут тренеры, педагоги, спортсмены и спортивные судьи. Региональным федерациям нужно поручить сформировать списки преподавателей.
Oct 24, 2022 7:02 AM # 
Google Translated...

2.2. Heads of regional federations to form a group of volunteers from coaches, teachers, specialists, sports referees and athletes to ensure the process of teaching citizens the skills of orienteering in unfamiliar terrain.

The Ministry of Sports of Russia, under the leadership of Deputy Minister of Sports Baisultanov Odes Khasaevich, held a meeting with representatives of applied sports federations to assist in teaching citizens the specialized skills that are necessary during a special military operation in Ukraine. We must give proposals to the list of activities for the preparation and conduct of training events. Training must be free of charge.
Gorin V.V. We are obliged to provide assistance, especially since in practice we are engaged in training athletes in orienteering.
Svir A.V. First of all, it is necessary to resolve the issue of cartographic material, its reproduction and the availability of a sufficient number of compasses.
Kudryashov N.N. The training should be based on several practical exercises on the ground with maps of the scale that will be used by the foot armed
Elizarov V.L. Coaches, teachers, athletes and sports judges can teach. Regional federations should be instructed to generate lists of teachers.
Oct 24, 2022 6:58 PM # 
So they want to have orienteers and coaches train the conscripts they've dragged off the streets, so that they won't get lost in the occupied territory.

Fossil, I think there was a portion of the Donbass that was occupied by Russia before February 24.
Oct 24, 2022 7:08 PM # 
It sounds like they are planning to conscript civilian orienteers to train new conscripted soldiers.
Oct 25, 2022 2:23 PM # 
reading this "Вопрос 3: «О Календаре ФСОР»" is also interesting and possibly somewhat telling of knowledge some of those top federation officials might have as they discuss their future events calendar
Oct 25, 2022 5:45 PM # 
How quickly can we whip up some bogus orienteering/ rogaining maps of Ukraine - maybe showing swamp land as rough open and sensitive installations as impassable cliffs. Then post them to World of O where the 'Ruskies' are sure to find them.
Oct 25, 2022 9:44 PM # 
My first thought was that clearly I am underachieving in promoting orienteering as a national federation board member. Must…try…harder…
Oct 25, 2022 10:01 PM # 
LOL at the discovery that orienteering is viewed as a key element of preparation in the military. This goes back to the old days of the Soviet Union .

Orienteering in the Armed Forces
Oct 26, 2022 11:43 PM # 
Well, orienteering is in the World Military Games... just ask the Chinese.
Oct 28, 2022 2:20 PM # 
Just a few examples of the perils that surely visit those who make navigational errors in combat:

"Lt. Col. Terry Jones said four American soldiers in civilian clothes were driving in a car in the city when "they made a wrong turn and found themselves . . . in front of Panama Defense Forces {PDF} headquarters." There, the four were stopped by about 40 civilians and five or six PDF soldiers, who tried to remove them from the car. The U.S. soldiers "panicked and ran," Jones said, and PDF troops opened fire, seriously wounding one American, who was taken to the U.S. military hospital here, where he died soon afterwards."

"It began as a nighttime convoy by an Army maintenance unit near the Euphrates River. It ended in a wrong turn at a bridge that led to death for some American soldiers, the capture of others and an embarrassment to the American military in the early days of the war against Iraq..."

"It was a small error, but a fatal one. The 507th Army Maintenance Company — a support unit of clerks, repairmen and cooks — had taken a wrong turn in the desert, stumbling into Nasiriyah by mistake. Without warning, the company suddenly found itself surrounded, an easy target for Iraqi soldiers and fedayeen paramilitary forces armed with AK-47s, mortars and rocket-propelled grenades. The ensuing attack proved to be the Army’s bloodiest day of the ground war-and the first hint of the deadly quagmire that Iraq would soon become. Eleven American soldiers were killed and nine were wounded when the 507th came under what the military later described as a “torrent of fire” in Nasiriyah."

"British Army Take Wrong Turn Into Taliban Territory", start watching at 16:20:

"Two Israeli Defense Force soldiers accidentally drove into a Palestinian village in the West Bank Tuesday evening, sparking a brief clash with local residents who pelted the vehicle with rocks, the army said."
Oct 28, 2022 6:47 PM # 
This would be more worrying, given past history of what gets said by Putin's reps and what then actually happens or happened:
Также в зоне риска Калининградская и Псковская области из-за границ с Эстонией, Польшей и Литвой. Необходимо скорректировать Календари ФСОР 2023, 2024 и 2025 годов с учётом сложившейся ситуации и проводить Чемпионаты, Кубки и особенно Первенства России в
более безопасных регионах.
Estonian, Lithuanian and Polish O-federations must surely have been wondering about what could be in store for the safety of their planned event sites
Oct 28, 2022 6:50 PM # 
Google translation: "Also at risk are the Kaliningrad and Pskov regions because of the borders with Estonia, Poland and Lithuania. It is necessary to adjust the FSOR Calendars for 2023, 2024 and 2025, taking into account the current situation, and to hold Championships, Cups and especially the Championship of Russia in
safer regions."
Oct 29, 2022 6:28 AM # 
The sad part is it's typically the officers in charge of navigation who end up getting their troops in trouble (I am speaking from experience although thankfully that was only a training ex - just give me the map!)
Oct 29, 2022 8:47 AM # 
I can reinforce tRicky's comment in two ways.
1) My son was a medic in Canadian Forces Reserves. When their unit went on navigation training he ALWAYS - due to his distant past orienteering experience - became the designated navigator for the team.
2) While mapping part of their camp I was once asked by a US National Guard MP what I was doing. I explained orienteering and how it ws good at training land navigation and quick decision making. "That's what we need is officers who can make decisions" was his reply.
Nov 1, 2022 1:32 PM # 
It's a problem for both officer and enlisted training and proficiency, not just one or the other, at least in the US. I'm a military officer who orienteers and it's been pretty eye opening to see how little regard there is for land nav skill among so much of my own country's military training and development entities when I've made pitches to increase the navigation training. There are some programs and units that get it, particularly in the special ops community, but your average "Joe"... God help him.
Nov 2, 2022 2:28 AM # 
"Put your map away, el-tee!"
- all of the instructors to me during the navigation portion of survival training. Apparently keeping the map safe and pristine is more important than knowing where you are along your multi-km compass bearing and pace count line.
Nov 2, 2022 3:47 AM # 
That's why you have to 'talc' it before heading out (I'd never heard that expression not relating to the white powdery substance before joining the military).
Nov 2, 2022 7:41 AM # 
I had to look up "talc". Is that what I know as coverseal? The stuff that rogainers once used to protect their maps. It never worked for me, always bubbles and the moisture crept in from the edges.
Nov 2, 2022 11:55 AM # 
Yes the sticky covering that I refer to as contact (which is actually a brand name, much like how the English call vacuuming 'Hoovering' and Americans call photocopying 'Xeroxing').
Nov 2, 2022 3:30 PM # 
Con-Tact is the brand name for the clear sticky covering. "Kleenex" for facial tissue is the classic example of brand name appropriation; here are some other migrations to common use [thread hijack...sorry].
Nov 2, 2022 10:15 PM # 
Yes back to the topic. One can only imagine the awful situation faced by our colleagues in Russia, who may or may not privately support the "special military operation" (TM). Being required to provide training. I bet we are all dependant on government support to some degree, it would take courage to turn it down, because that would be the price. And there wouldn't be unanimity in such a decision either, so the internal ructions would be bitter.
Jul 31, 2023 2:53 PM # 
Ukrainians o-runners:
Russia is torturing (Ukrainian) sportsman, master of sports in orienteering, Kyrylo Barannyk.
On May 30, 2023, employees of the FSB (Federal Security Service) of the russian federation abducted Kyrylo in the middle of the day in Simferopol, the capital of the occupied Crimea. He was accused of mining the railway tracks in the Bakhchysarai area on February 23, 2023.
The occupying special services obtained Kyrylo's "confession" of the explosion, torturing him with electric current, threatening to rape and kill his mother. Currently, Kyrylo Barannyk is held in pre-trial detention centre #2 in the city of Simferopol.
From July 11 to 16, the World Orienteering Championship takes place in Flims, Switzerland. Kyrylo Barannyk could support athletes, follow competitions, perhaps even participate. However, he is being held by the FSB of the russian federation in the cells of the pre-trial detention centre of his native occupied city, undergoing torture.

From himself I'm want to add several details.
Kirill (Kyrylo) was a member of the Youth and Junior Ukrainian team.
The name of Kirill Barannik is on the list of candidates for the Russian sports team in orienteering.
During the occupation of Crimea Kirill began holding orienteering competitions on his own, offering an alternative to competitions that exist under the auspices of Russia.

Many belarusian orienteering sportsman's also was trapped in a prisons before the war and in a first days of the Putin aggression against Ukraine because of own position anti regime.

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