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The 1980 Summer Olympic Games Boycott

745 words - 3 pages

The 1980 Summer Olympic Games have been chosen to be hosted in Moscow, Russia. However, in late December 1979, the Soviet Union looked to Afghanistan, a key location settled in between Asia and the Middle East, to establish key positions in the country. While the Soviet Union Invasion of Afghanistan in December, 1979 did not affect all Olympic competing nations, it proved itself to lead to a bigger situation–the 1980 Olympic Games boycott.

The 1980 summer Olympics, or more formally known as Games of the XXII Olympiad, was held in Moscow in the Soviet Union. Moscow proved to serve as a sufficient location for the Summer Games, proving itself with its size and budget, it was also an opportunity to elicit new jobs into the community and to increase in tourism rates. However, in Christmas 1979, Soviet Union paratroopers landed in Kabal, capital to Afghanistan. The country was already at the grip of war and its monarchy was decreasing in power. The Prime Minister of Afghanistan, Hazifullah Amin, wanted to add a more Western culture into the country and relieve the country of its Muslim tradition. A majority of the country was angered by this because Muslim belief was common. Soon enough, Afghan residents would react by joining the Mujahdeen, a guerrilla force composed of Muslims. The Mujahdeen declared a jihad, a holy war, on the Amin government of which included Russia. The Soviet Union took action on December 27th, 1979 by murdering Amin and appointed Kamal Barbak to lead Afghanistan. Many countries were disapproving of Russia's actions and in their perspective, felt that it was both inappropriate and unnecessary in Russia's involvement.

The United Nations, an international organization to sustain peace, promote social progress, and to create friendly relations between nations, condemned the Soviet Union's actions in January 1980. However, the United Nation Security Council to call Russia to withdraw their troops was vetoed by Russia themselves. From the beginning, the Carter Administration had been closely watching the Soviet Union's actions in Afghanistan. President Jimmy Carter, in response, wrote an aggressively worded letter to Leonid Brezhnev that criticized the Soviet Union's actions and vowed to protect Middle Eastern oil supplies. The United States later responded by...

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