IOC president Thomas Bach (right), with Olympic Council of Asia president Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah at the OCA general assembly in Incheon, South Korea // photo Getty Images

IOC president Thomas Bach (right), with Olympic Council of Asia president Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah at the OCA general assembly in Incheon, South Korea // photo Getty Images

IOC

Sports and politics do mix

At long last, the secret that really is no secret is finally out: sports and politics do mix.

The president of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, said so, in a speech over the weekend at the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea. If it is a mystery why it took so long for the IOC president, any IOC president, to articulate the obvious, this IOC president deserves full credit for not just recognizing reality but standing ready to build on it.

IOC president Thomas Bach, flanked by communications director Mark Adams, leaving Wednesday's news conference

IOC president Thomas Bach, flanked by communications director Mark Adams, leaving Wednesday's news conference

IOC

More and more, indisputably Bach’s IOC

LAUSANNE, Switzerland — In 1980, Juan Antonio Samaranch of Spain was elected president of the International Committee. The next year, the IOC held a far-reaching Congress in Baden-Baden, Germany, that set the stage for Samaranch’s visionary — yes, visionary — years in office.

Germany’s Thomas Bach was elected IOC president last September. This December, the IOC will hold an all-members assembly in Monaco to reflect on his far-reaching review and potential reform process, which he has dubbed “Olympic Agenda 2020.” Backstage, the comparisons to Samaranch have already begun, and within the Olympic community those comparisons are assuredly meant to be complimentary.

Norway's Anette Sagen during a 2013 FIS World Cup ski jump event at the famed Holmenkollen venue // photo Getty Images

Norway's Anette Sagen during a 2013 FIS World Cup ski jump event at the famed Holmenkollen venue // photo Getty Images

2022 Bid Cities

The Oslo 2022 conundrum

The International Olympic Committee finds itself early this week in Oslo in a conundrum of its own making.

On the one hand, it is assuredly the IOC’s responsibility to encourage strong bids to come forward. Thus Oslo 2022. On the other, in politics – even, perhaps especially, sports politics – perceptions can matter as much as reality. Thus, again, Oslo 2022.

The scene Sunday at the IOC "summit" // photo courtesy of IOC/Richard Juillart

The scene Sunday at the IOC "summit" // photo courtesy of IOC/Richard Juillart

IOC

A stealth Olympic summit

The International Olympic Committee held something of a stealth meeting of key power-brokers Sunday at its lakefront headquarters in  Lausanne, Switzerland, a move that illuminates the who’s who and what’s what behind the developing agenda of the recently elected president, Germany’s Thomas Bach.

Bach convened the meeting, not widely publicized beforehand and in an IOC release termed an “Olympic Summit,” to address “the main topics of interest and concern” confronting the movement.