Right Field

Brief chronicles of our sporting times.

Germany May Demand Democracy Pledges from Olympians


The Germans are awfully touchy about the whole “Nazi” thing aren’t they?

Germany may force sports stars to make a commitment to democracy, a ministry spokesman said on Tuesday, days after a national rower quit the Olympic village following reports that her boyfriend was a neo-Nazi.

The case of Nadja Drygalla, whose partner has been a member of the far-right National Democratic Party (NPD), has ignited a debate in Germany about extremism in sport, although the rower denies holding far-right views herself.

Last year’s discovery that a neo-Nazi cell was responsible for the seemingly unrelated murders of nine Turkish and Greek immigrants has triggered soul-searching in Germany about institutionalised tolerance of right-wing* extremism.

As part of a regular review of guidelines on sport funding, the Interior Ministry is considering insisting that top clubs and associations make a formal commitment to democratic values.

* Someone apparently hasn’t read the requisite text on this.

Tags: Olympics


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