Bahrain… to the world cup?

13 May, '06

SoccerDolphin.jpgWe have a saying in Arabic which translates to “some people’s misfortune is others’ fortune!” This is an apt saying for what is being discussed at the moment for the disqualification of Iran from the forthcoming World Cup in protest over the continuing Iranian nuclear ambitions, and its calls for the eradication of Israel:

‘Renewed claims by some European Parliament officials have led to a situation where Bahrain is on call and could replace Iran at the World Cup,’ the sports desk of Iran’s leading news agency ISNA reported Friday.

According to ISNA, some deputies from the European Parliament have once again called on football’s world controlling body, FIFA, to disqualify Iran from the World Cup – reportedly due to the Islamic state’s insistence to continue its nuclear programmes and renewed call on eradication of Israel – and replace it with Bahrain.
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Would it be wrong to gain a space in the World Cup due to political influences? Of course it is, sports should be divorced from politics. Would Bahrain be wrong to accept such a possibility if it comes true? Of course not! If Bahrain refuses, someone else would take over and Iran will still be out!

Rock on!! 😀

(guys and gals who believe in the power of wishful thinking and prayer, put those into overdrive will you?)

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Comments (16)

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  1. Jinny says:

    Your enthusiasm is heartening, Mahmood! Rock on, indeed! And that mascot is . . . a bottlenosed dolphin?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hi Mahmood,

    This has actually happened before.
    In 1992 UEFA expelled Yugslavia (bad spelling) and replaced them with Denmark, who then went on to win the tournament.
    now i wonder can lightening strike twice?
    Well heres hoping!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. mahmood says:

    hey, so there is precedent (and to hell with spelling! :))

    Jinny, yes of course, we have dolphins and dugongs aplenty in our waters… I must confess that this is just a picture I picked up from the internet and is probably from a proposal by the events management company PICO who have a base in Bahrain (actually in the same building we’re at as well!)

  4. anony says:

    ههه, منتخب يقتات على الجيف ما يقدر يتاهل قامو اهلوا بالعافيه هههههه

  5. Waffles says:

    Hmmm this is wrong in many ways. The way the article has been written (the arabic version) shows that the writer is happy about the pressure being put on Iran.

    Plus, this is totaly messed up, what does sportsmanship have to do with polictics? Is the Iranian team making nukes? This is one messed up world.

  6. basima says:

    > Plus, this is totaly messed up, what does sportsmanship
    > have to do with polictics? Is the Iranian team making nukes?
    > This is one messed up world.

    Of course the Iranian team doesn’t make the nukes. But this Ahmadinejad guy is not a dictator, who is ruling Iran against the will of the Iranian people. They did *elect* him. The had a *choice*. So whatever he does, the people of Iran are responsible for it, too! Therefore in my opinion it’s perfectly ok, to “punish” Iran by disqualifying them from the World Cup.

  7. Joker says:

    Sounds to me like one of those “Iran doesnt get treated fairly” stories.
    But if it is true.. its wrong.. politics and sports shouldn’t mix. Defies the whole point.

  8. Waffles says:

    “who is ruling Iran against the will of the Iranian people.”

    And how is he rulling the people against their will?

    “They did *elect* him. The had a *choice*.”

    The people DID ELECT him!

    “So whatever he does, the people of Iran are responsible for it, too!”

    I do not agree with this statement. You blame the people for their leader’s action?!? So do you blame the people of Bahrain for all the corupption in the government?

    “Therefore in my opinion it’s perfectly ok, to “punish” Iran by disqualifying them from the World Cup.”

    Never mix politics with sports, because that is totaly not right! And not fair.

  9. basima says:

    > And how is he rulling the people against their will?

    Huh??? I did write, that he’s not a dictator.

    > The people DID ELECT him!

    Yeah, I know, because that’s what I wrote.

    > I do not agree with this statement. You blame the people
    > for their leader’s action?!? So do you blame the people of
    > Bahrain for all the corupption in the government?

    Well, in contrast to most other countries on the arabian peninsula, Bahrain is more or less a democracy. So the people of Bahrain can choose, whom they want to have in their parliament and their government.

    If the government is corrupt and the people don’t choose to boot them out in the next election, this means that the majority of the Bahrainian people is perfectly ok with this corruption and do actually support it. In this case they are of course also to blame for the corruption.

    > Never mix politics with sports, because that is totaly not right!
    > And not fair.

    Maybe it’s not fair. But disqualifying Iran from the World Cup would be a peaceful way to clearly tell the people of Iran, that most other countries don’t like at all, what the Iranian government is currently doing.
    Or would you prefer to have this message being delivered to them by the US-Airforce?

  10. Ingrid says:

    Well, there were problems with the elections in Iran and the hardliners made sure that all access for moderate people who wanted to run was not equal. Yes, politics and sports ought to be seperate but hey, since when did that stop the Olympics? Plenty of politickin’ and boycotting over there throughout the years. (‘specially during the Cold War)
    Well, it’s a shame for the Iranian soccer team, but hey, it is also a Dutch saying; Good luck comes with Bad luck. In this case, the bad luck is with the other team..good luck to the Bahrainis
    Ingrid

  11. Anonymous says:

    Football was purely football back in the good ol’ days, now it’s ruled by commercialism and politics, which is totaly wrong.

    Now Bahrain doesn’t deserve to be in the world cup, that;s a fact. Iran did qualify by winning their games, now they wanna punish this team?

    Invloving politics with sports is wrong, and the whole point of olympics, the world cup and any other major sporting events is to bring people closer.

    People wanna see great performances in the world cup, to enjoy the sport, not to see another reincarnation of Saudi Arabia’s 8-0 thrashing by Germany back in 2002, now Bahrain are far more worse than Saudi Arabia’s team of 2002 (of which they are better than the current one IMO) so this will mean that a 10,12 or 14-0 result is on the horizon if it does happen.

    Damn Sepp Blatter, he’s an idiot if he succumbs to political influences to ruin the game, this will be a gateway to other decisions in the future. Isn’t he the same fool who said “World Cup should be for everyone, its airing rights should not be commercialised”? Look at what’s happening to the sport now, it’s been killed.

  12. Ingrid says:

    Anonymous…sports is (much more) commercialized and that is the way of tv everywhere these days. It shouldn’t , but it is. The olympics have always been effected by politics and I am becoming more cynical as I age (ouch, did I just say that?); the more people get involved in activities like say, professional sports, and the type of people it can attract (on top of well meaning types) as in, control freaks..the more ‘politics’ you will find. And …it’s also about the money. Let’s not forget that.
    Ingrid

  13. sadferret says:

    I understand Ahmadinejad is a huge football fan, this will hurt, and they knew that. There were already plans afoot(y) to thwart him travelling to the World Cup matches.

  14. Wolfwood says:

    Sports and athletics should be a peaceful competition free of political interference, otherwise we’d have, as an extreme example, situations like the Munich Massacre. It didn’t matter to the Black September group or their associates that their hostages were atheletes who had nothing to do with their country’s politics. In their, they were Israelis and had to be killed because it’s their “God given duty” to kill JOOOOOZ. At the recent Winter Olympics, both Koreas were recognized and were able to compete as a single entity, despite Kim Jong Ill’s lunacy, so at least there are some sane people out there who are willing to make the distinction between sports and state 🙂

    Iran won their spot fair and square and having the Bahraini team, in their current state, replace them is a travesty (and I’m saying this as someone who doesn’t even watch football). And besides, if we do get get the spot, it’s just gonna look bad that we couldn’t get to the World Cup on our own merits and that we had to have it handed to us. I also imagine the Iranian fans won’t be too happy either and might threaten their safety…

  15. Forever blowing bubbles says:

    Love the dolphin mascot. That is cute.

    On the issue of whether sport and politics mix: they definitely do – look at the prestige governments gain from having a successful national football team. Its for this reason that sports boycotts send a clear message to countries that their behaviour is unacceptable. Look how super pissed the rugby mad boers were in South Africa about the sports boycott there – for a lot of them the end of apartheid wasn’t welcomed because it was just but because it meant that the Springboks could go on tour.

  16. Gizmo says:

    what a shame, if this actually happens and Bahrain accepts the offer, it will be a total shame. What has the iranian done to deserve such talks about disqualifications other than just being an iranian?

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