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Olympics Opening Ceremony Director Fired Over Holocaust Comments on Eve of the Tokyo Games

Prior to the Tokyo Games, organizers fired the director of the opening ceremony over his comments about the Holocaust, while media reported that former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a memorable lawyer for the Tokyo Games, would skip the event.

The news comes amid a series of embarrassments that have provoked Tokyo organizers at home and abroad, and comes just days after a popular musician was forced to step down as composer for the festival following old reports of his bullying and misconduct. Appeared.

Abe, who famously dressed up as a plumber named from the video game Super Mario at the Rio Games to represent Japan, had an outward role in attracting the Olympics to Tokyo.

In a speech in front of a banquet hall full of members of the International Olympic Committee in 2013, he described the protracted nuclear disaster in Fukushima as “under control” and described his country as “passionate, proud and strong believer” in the Olympics.

At the time, Abe and his supporters believed that the 1964 Tokyo Games would mark the country’s renaissance after decades of economic stagnation and the recovery from the catastrophic nuclear and natural disasters of 2011.

Instead, the games, a year late due to a global epidemic, faced a series of setbacks, including the departure of Yoshiro Mori, the former chairman of the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee, who resigned after making sexual comments. Hiroshi Sasaki, the creative leader of the Tokyo Olympics, soon resigned after making disgusting comments about a popular Japanese female entertainment show.

Kentaro Kobayashi, who was listed as the show director of the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee’s opening event of the Games, was re-emerged in the local media after being fired in 1998 after making jokes about the Holocaust as part of his comedy campaign.

The Simon Wisendal Center for International Jewish Human Rights has previously issued a statement condemning Kobayashi’s past behavior.

“Any contact with this person at the Tokyo Olympics will insult the memory of six million Jews and make the Paralympics a brutal mockery,” said Abraham Cooper, the rabbi’s co-dean and director of the center’s social action.

SUFDUED AFFAIR

Friday’s Opening Ceremony is usually the main showcase of the host nation, including https://www.reuters.com/lifestyle/sports/tokyo-opening-ceremony-will-be-sobering- show-not-flashly-2021-07- 21 The Japanese media reports that less than 950 people – including about 15 world leaders – are expected to attend.

First Lady Jill Biden is expected to land in Tokyo on Thursday afternoon for the Games Opening Ceremony, raising hopes that she could use her visit to discuss vaccinations with Prime Minister Yoshihide Suka.

Biden has been traveling across the United States, urging more people in the country to be vaccinated.

Only a third of Japanese have at least one dose of the vaccine, which has raised public concern that the Olympics could become a super-spreader event. Dozens of participants have already tested positive for COVID-19, thus isolating athletes and team members.

The NHK said Abe decided against attending the ceremony in an effort to reduce health risks among residents and visitors after the Japanese government announced emergency and virus controls over Tokyo. Abe’s office could not be reached immediately on Thursday, a public holiday in Japan.

COVID-19 infections are on the rise in the capital, and they are expected to increase further, plaguing healthcare providers.

In a recent poll in the Asahi newspaper, 68% of respondents doubted the Olympic organizers’ ability to control corona virus infections, while 55% said they were opposed to advancing sports.

The Olympics have already begun, with the Japanese women’s softball team expelling guests for a successful start on Wednesday, while the high-scoring American women’s football team was upset by Sweden.

The second day of softball began under cloudy skies in Fukushima early Thursday morning, with the United States beating Canada 2-0. Japan then faces Mexico.

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