Asia
Op-Ed

Tokyo Olympics: To Be or Not To Be?

Making a final decision on the Games has become a no-win situation for Prime Minister Suga
Part of the Japanese Foreign Policy Project
Japan

This article was originally published in The Diplomat Magazine.

With less than five months remaining until the scheduled opening of the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide faces a monumental decision that could cost him his office: Should Japan hold the Olympics as scheduled, postpone for another year, or cancel entirely?

In his policy address to the Diet on January 18, 2021, Suga declared his government’s intention to move steadily forward on holding the Olympics in Japan “as the proof of human beings having overcome the novel coronavirus and of Japan’s recovery and reconstruction from the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake.”  However, as countries around the world continue to struggle to contain the spread of COVID-19, particularly with the surfacing of multiple variants, whether Japan can host the Olympics safely for participating athletes as well as spectators looks increasingly uncertain. 

This article was originally published in The Diplomat Magazine.

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