The FIFA: Reform or Abolition

By Muammar Al Qadhafi

The World Cup is supposed to have an international character. It is not the property of a given state or a group of states. As such, no one has the right to monopolize it, exploit it or alter it as they wish. However, this is precisely the current state of the World Cup. It does not belong to all states. It is monopolized, badly exploited and willfully adapted to serve the interests of those who monopolize and exploit it. Ostensibly, the World Cup was established to achieve a social and psychological benefit for people. Nevertheless, what The World Cup has achieved is the exact opposite.

First, beware the deadly diseases caused by The World Cup. Medical research has proven, and will prove further in the future, that those who have football (soccer) mania, and those addicted to the game are most at risk of psychological and nervous disorders. Those disorders in turn are the leading causes of heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, hyper-tension and premature ageing. Human physical activity has diminished due to the over-use of technology. People have become more lethargic, lazy and obese. At the same time, sport which should be an individual activity that cannot be delegated to others just like prayers, or a collective one exercised by the all the masses ( Mass Sports* ), has been transformed into an exploitative activity monopolized by the rich dominant elite like the World Cup. The masses are reduced to playing the role of the idiotic spectator.

Second, beware the hatred, enmity and racism generated by football (soccer).

The person who came up with the original proposal had hoped for the opposite effect. If he were alive today, he would be the first to propose the abolition of The World Cup.

He had hoped that it would create harmony among peoples and would provide them a degree of relief. What transpired however was the spread and deepening of hatred even among friends? Enmity was born between peoples. The games in 1970 led to war between El Salvador and Honduras that left more than 30,000 people either dead or wounded. It also left a wound that will never heal. The World Cup has tuned into an economic venture of exploitation and blackmail instead of being a venture for sports and entertainment. Afterwards it became a corrupt, and corrupting, venture. Money was laundered under the name of the World Cup and passports were forged for it. Fictitious games were held to obtain money through the inflated price of tickets. The corruption reached the level of death threats, physical harm and bringing devastating financial and material losses to anyone who attempts to open the files of its corruption. Then, the World Cup became a slave market. Trafficking in human beings became a widespread public practice. Players are bought and sold from one country to another and from one club to the other. The youth of the poor countries became the slaves of the rich ones. The slavery and the trade in human beings from Africa to Europe and America and from Latin America to Europe have been brought back to life by the World Cup. This humiliation of young men takes place because they are poor and because they come from poor African, Latin American and some Asian countries. For that reason alone, they are shipped to the slave camps of the clubs of the rich. The clubs that make up FIFA are the clubs of the rich. The countries that control FIFA, and host the World Cup are the rich countries alone. As for the poor countries, they will never enjoy the honor of hosting the World Cup events till kingdom come. Even if they wish to host such events, even if they give all they have for that honor, even if they go down on their knees begging the President and leadership of FIFA that honor will never be theirs. Why?!! Because hosting the World Cup events requires playing fields of certain standards that are available only for rich countries. They also require a certain type of infrastructure. Most Third World countries suffer from the inadequacy of their infrastructures in the fields of communications, transport, airports, seaports, hotels, etc. All those conditions have naturally made hosting the World Cup the monopoly of the rich countries alone. Therefore, the World Cup is not international nor does it belong to all people.

The World Cup has strengthened the extreme right and the racist tendencies in the world. The irrefutable proof of this is the fact that the associations that support sports clubs are racist associations of the extreme right. Where is the conscience of the world?

The conscience of the world needs to be awakened. If it the billions of dollars, currently spent on the empty World Cup, are directed to better the lot of the poor peoples by combating poverty and disease and by preserving the environment, it would be better for all of us than wasting billions on sports and the World Cup betting. The volume of sports bets in 2006 is expected to exceed $250 billion. The volume of sports activity in America in 2004 exceeded $200 billion. The scandals and corruption of this game will be revealed in the book of the British journalist Andrew Jennings. Some of them have already been exposed by the European Independent Report.

The monopoly has extended even the right to broadcast the games on radio and TV. The poor will not attend them, will not watch them, will not listen to them and will not even read about the. Only the rich have the right to enjoy them.

The solution: Every state must have the right to host some World Cup games on the basis of its capacity regardless of the unjust conditions imposed by the World Cup. The games should be distributed among the states of a certain region or continent. The distribution should take place on the basis of the absorptive capacity of the respective states. This solution would result in the following benefits:

  • A number of nations will be able to enjoy the game directly.
  • The increase in the number of host countries will bring wit it a corresponding increase in the size of stadium audiences.
  • The poor peoples who are deprived, and who will continue to be deprived of that pleasure forever as a result of the unjust and corrupt system of the World Cup, harbor feelings of injustice, inequity and bitterness. The proposed solution will do away with those feelings. Thus, it will help achieve the positive social objective of the World Cup as envisioned by its founder, the French Jules Rimet.
  • Increasing the revenues for FIFA.
  • The benefits as well as the losses, should they be incurred, will be shared among a number of countries.
  • Avoiding the confusion, failure or the disruption of the Championship that may result from an unexpected emergency such as a natural disasters or the death of the head of the host country.
  • Enabling the poor countries to benefit from FIFA’s funds in the rehabilitation of their infrastructure at least in the field of sports. This would be different from the current situation when FIFA hoodwinks one and all by spending a trifle of its money on poor countries. At the same time it hordes or spends billions on purposes known or known to us, purposes that serve the interests of speculators, exploiters, blackmailers and those who trade in anything and everything.

Invoking distance is a flimsy argument. The World Cup games take place in cities within the host countries that are farther apart in distance and time difference than some neighboring countries in the same region. To refute that unacceptable argument, suffice it to recall that the 2006 World Cup matches were held in 12 cities in Germany. The distance separating one city from another was at times larger than the distance separating Germany from some other European countries. The distance between Hamburg and Munich is more than 600 Km and that between Munich and Berlin is more than 500 Km and so on. So, what is there to prevent the holding of the World Cup Finals in more than one country separated by those same distances or less? America hosted the World Cup Finals in 1994. The games were played in cities that are thousands of kilometers apart such as Boston and Dallas, Boston and Stanford and Orlando and Boston. The time difference between them was several hours.

In the worst scenario, why not make the champion host the following World Cup finals? This way, the competition in the World Cup will have some meaning namely; that the champions will have an undisputed right to host the following World Cup.

This is the solution. Otherwise, the World Cup should be abolished in view of the mortal danger it poses to the world physically and morally. It leads to problems, difficulties, disorders, hatred and enmity. It causes the spread of degenerate behavior and collective recklessness and irresponsibility. Socio-psychological studies have proven that the manic, fanatical addicts of the World Cup are below normal in intellectual capacity and psychological development.

Mr. Blatter is a prudent man. He is not corrupt personally. I respect him. However we are not sure whether or not he has the ability to change the World Cup or abolish it.

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Sport, Horsemanship and the Stage
(The Green Book, Chapter III)

Sport is either private, like praying performed by a person alone in the privacy of a closed room, or public practiced collectively in fields and arenas, like praying collectively in places of worship. Public sport is what interests all people. They practice these sports and do not let others practice it in their stead, since this is as inconceivable as having a crowd enter a place of worship to watch one or more worshippers praying, without praying themselves! It is also inconceivable for crowds to enter athletic fields and stadiums to watch one or more players, without practicing the games themselves.

Sports are like praying, eating, and like the comfort of warmth and coolness. It would be foolish for a crowd to enter a restaurant to watch one or more persons eating, or to let one or more persons enjoy warming their bodies in their place. It is unacceptable for a society to permit an individual or a team to monopolize sports to the exclusion of other members of society. Neither is it acceptable for society to bear the expenses of such a monopoly by one individual or team. This is as an unacceptable as having a people democratically allowing an individual, or a group – whether a party, a social class, a sect, a tribe or an assembly – to determine their destiny on their behalf or determine their needs for them.

Privately practiced sport is of no interest to anyone except the person who exercises on his own and at his own expense. However public sports are a common need for people and no one person, or group of persons, can play a game of sports on behalf of the people, neither from the physical nor from the ,democratic point of view. Physically speaking, this representative player cannot transmit to others, what physical benefits he gained from the exercise; and democratically speaking, no individual or team has the right to monopolize sports, power, wealth or weapons, to the exclusion of others.

Sporting clubs which constitute the traditional sports institutions in the world today and are maintained by public funds and other public means of support in every country, are rapacious social instruments, not unlike the dictatorial political instruments which monopolize power to the exclusion of the people, and the economic instruments which monopolize society’s wealth, as well as the traditional military instruments which monopolize weapons, acting as substitutes for society.

The era of the masses that destroys the monopolizing instruments of wealth, power an weapons, shall inevitably destroy the instruments that monopolize social activities such as sports and horsemanship. The masses line up to support a candidate to act as their representative in determining their destiny on the impossible assumption that this candidate shall represent them and uphold their dignity and sovereignty and all related considerations, and are eventually alienated, as they watch a person doing what they should naturally be doing themselves. These same masses are like the crowds that do not play sports themselves, due to their inability to do so because of their ignorance and because they are scorned by the monopolizing instruments that are bent on distracting these numbed crowds that laugh and applaud instead of practicing the sport monopolized by these rapacious instruments.

Sport, like power, should be for the masses, and just as wealth and weapons should be for the people, sport as a social activity should also be for the people.

Public sport is for all the people. It is the right of all because in addition to entertainment, it is beneficial to health. It is unreasonable to let sport be monopolized, by particular groups who obtain its moral and health benefits to the exclusion of others, while the masses’ public sport all the needed facilities and means of support, and pay the expenses to maintain it. The multitude which crowds the stadium to watch a game, laugh and applaud, is a multitude of fools who are incapable of practicing sports themselves; they crowd the grandstands practicing lethargy and applaud those heroes who took the initiative, and who dominated the field and the sporting activities, and exploited all the offered means of supports sustained by the masses. The grandstands of public athletic fields are actually constructed to obstruct access to the fields. These grandstands shall one day be vacated and abolished when the masses march into athletic fields to practice sports in crowds, as they realize that sports are activities to be practiced not watched.

The grandstands shall disappear when no spectators come to fill up the rows and seats. People who are incapable of performing heroic acts in life, and those who are not well read in history and are incapable of visualizing the future, and those who do not take life seriously, are the marginal people who fill up the seats in theaters and other kinds of performances, to events and learn how these events take their course. They are exactly like pupils who fill up the seats in schools because they ar6 uneducated, because they are initially illiterate.

Those who make their own life do not need to see how life takes its course through watching the actors on stage or other theaters. Likewise, horsemen who ride their horses have no place on the sidelines of the racetrack, and if all people owned horses there would be no spectators to watch and applaud. The seated spectators are only those who cannot practice horse riding because they do not ride horses.

Thus Bedouin people are not interested in the theater and other performances because they are hard working and take life very seriously. They are the makers of the serious life and that is why they look upon acting with scorn. Bedouin people also don’t watch players playing a game; they practice their own games collectively and hold their own festivities, because they feel the spontaneous, inexplicable need for it.

The various kinds of boxing and wrestling are evidence that mankind has not yet purged the tendency to cruel behavior. But this shall inevitably come to an end when man progresses and becomes more civilized. Gun matches and before that, human offerings were familiar practices in an earlier stage ‘)f human progress. But these cruel practices ended hundreds of years ago, and later, man came to look upon those practices with self-derision and distress too because human beings like himself had once indulged in such practices. It shall be the same with the various kinds of boxing and wrestling after decades or maybe hundreds of years. But the more civilized and the more progressive individuals are the only ones able to avoid such cruel practices and refrain from giving encouragement to those who indulge in them.

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