WASHINGTON—Today, the Biden administration formally announced a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. China’s increasing aggression toward Taiwan, coverup of its role in unleashing the coronavirus, crimes against humanity and genocide committed against the Uyghurs, and crackdowns in Hong Kong make it an unsuitable host for Olympics.
Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts said of the announcement:
China is unfit to host the 2022 Olympics. President Biden missed an opportunity to pressure the IOC to postpone the games and find a new host country. A diplomatic boycott won’t dissuade the Chinese Communist Party from continuing its human rights abuses, genocide against the Uyghurs, and coronavirus cover-up. Once again, Biden is leading from behind and making a face-saving effort rather than taking the bold action necessary to confront China.
In an April 2021 report, Heritage senior policy analyst Olivia Enos laid out a tiered approach for the U.S. response to China’s unacceptable behavior in the context of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. In response to today’s announcement, Enos said:
“Hosting the Olympics is a privilege—one that China should not get to enjoy. The administration’s diplomatic boycott will not hold China accountable for its malfeasance. While a diplomatic boycott ensures that U.S. government officials will not tacitly condone Beijing's horrific human rights violations and myriad other ways that China is undermining international security and economic freedom, it falls short and comes too late to make much difference to Beijing.
“Ultimately, talk is cheap and the stakes are high. The Biden administration should be mobilizing a bipartisan, international coalition across governments and civil society to increase transparency at the International Olympic Committee, amplify coverage of human rights violations, and encourage athletes to stand in solidarity with those suffering at the hands of the CCP.”