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Ron Judd's Olympics Insider

Ron Judd, an Olympics junkie and Seattle Times columnist who has covered Olympic sports since 1997, will use this space to serve up news and opinion on the Summer and Winter Games -- also inviting you to chime in on Planet Earth's biggest get-together.

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April 30, 2009 8:54 AM

Canada, prepare to be boarded

Posted by Ron Judd

One of the culture clashes we full expect to see during the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver is the crunch of heavy, international-event-style security in a city and province .. how do we say this: well steeped and comfortable with the concept of civil liberties.

It's a simple fact of Olympic life that for several weeks in February, people will be roped-off, fenced off and blocked out of places they normally could travel unhindered -- and asked questions that, in any other context, would seem intrusive. They'll be mag'd and bagged coming in and out of places they normally visit every day, but suddenly have fallen inside "security zones."

One small part of that: Marine patrols expected to be active around the waterfront area, and on False Creek. The Vancouver Province gives a hint of that security measure today. Bottom line: Infiltrating the Olympics by sea might not be a pain-free exercise.

Simultaneously, the Vancouver Sun's Jeff Lee reports on his blog that some anti-Olympic protestors are claiming to be harassed by cops already, just for walking around.

Are the Olympics worth all that extra cop expense, cop intrusion, security cameras and general mistrust? It all depends on your outlook -- and, probably, your most recent experience with the Olympic movement's finest.

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Blogroll and links The official International Olympic Committtee site, with news releases, a searchable Olympic medals database and other archival information. Olympic news site from one of the Games' primary sponsors.
NBC Olympics columnist Alan Abrahamson's column/blog
Chicago Tribune Olympic sports writer Philip Hersh's blog U.S. Olympic Committee's athlete web site. Ed and Sheila Hula's Olympic News Service (subscription). News service with audio, video and text coverage of Olympic sports, during and between Olympics. Free, but charges for live video feed subscriptions. Beijing Organizing Committee Web site. Vancouver Organizing Committee's 2010 Winter Games site. London 2012 Summer Games site. Sochi, Russia's 2014 Winter Games site. Candidate city Chicago's summer 2016 bid committee site.
Olympic swimmer Tara Kirk's highly entertaining WCSN blog
Bellevue Olympian Scott Macartney's WCSN alpine ski-racing blog
Other WCSN Olympic athlete blogs.