The Winter Olympic Lifts the Curtain of Spring
Ambassador Ji Ping Published a Signed Article
4 February 2022
The traditional Chinese lunar calendar divides the year into 24 solar terms. Start of Spring, Li Chun, in Chinese, the first solar term of the year, begins this year on Feb 4 and ends on Feb 17. It almost coincides with the Beijing 2022 Olympic Games which will be held from Feb 4 to 20, 2022.
The start of Spring lifts the curtain of spring. After that everything turns green and full of vigor; people clearly see that the daytime is becoming longer and the weather is becoming warmer, which means a lot to human society as well.
Human society has been encountering one unprecedented challenge after another since entering the 21st century-from the ecological and environmental crisis, terrorism, regional conflicts, and wars to populism and anti-globalization. Worse, for the past two years, people across the world have been battling the COVID-19 pandemic, which is threatening to neutralize many of the achievements humans have made over the past few decades.
We need an impetus of vitality, along with encouragement and hope, and the Olympic spirit and its values, among a few other things, can give us that much-needed encouragement to walk out of the chilly winter.
Games promote solidarity
The Olympic spirit is embodied in the Olympic motto of “Faster, Higher, Stronger”. To this, the International Olympic Committee added “Together” last September, in recognition of the unifying power of sports and the importance of solidarity against the backdrop of the raging pandemic.
The word “together” tells us – We need more solidarity. More solidarity within societies and more solidarity among societies. The addition of “Together” to the Olympic motto highlights the important role of the Olympic Games in facilitating solidarity among people and countries around the world and encourages them to deal with the toughest of challenges facing humanity, including the COVID-19 pandemic, with the hope of succeeding in their efforts.
Since China has always attached great importance to harmony in diversity, the Winter Olympic Games will highlight solidarity, tolerance, and respect for cultural pluralism. IOC President Thomas Bach has put it aptly, “In today’s fragile world with so much uncertainty, the Olympic Games are more than ever a powerful symbol of hope, peace, and solidarity for all of humanity in all our diversity.”
Games suspend all hostilities
Apart from the values of solidarity, the Olympic spirit also contributes to peace. Tolerance, respect for pluralism, and cultural diversity lead to peace, the Olympic Games, by bringing people together from across countries and regions, cultures, and religions, promotes dialogue and deepens mutual understanding, leading to global peace. Sport is a universal language shared by people across the world, it helps bring humankind together by highlighting our commonalities regardless of our race, religion, ethnicity, nationality, culture, and language.
The UN General Assembly has been adopting a resolution titled “Building a Peaceful and Better World through Sport and the Olympic Ideal” before every Olympic Games. The resolution on Olympic Truce for Beijing 2022 was co-sponsored by 173 out of 193 UN Member States and was adopted in December 2021, the UN General Assembly called for the observance of Olympic Truce throughout the period.
While the interlocking Olympic rings symbolize the unity of the five continents, the harmonious atmosphere at the Olympic Village echoes the idea of the people around the world being one big family. In his speech, the IOC President stressed the importance of peace and solidarity in our divided world, “This bond of our shared humanity is even more relevant in our polarized world today.” No doubt, the suspension of conflicts and wars will create a good opportunity for harnessing the power of sports to advance global peace and development.
Build a community of shared future for mankind
The Beijing 2022 calls for not just Olympic Truce, but also the suspension of all hostilities. When watching the performances of athletes at the Olympics, we not only appreciate their sportsmanship but also develop a sense of global community, thereby breaking the barriers dividing humans.
Chinese president Xi Jinping said mankind is in an era of major development as well as profound transformation and change, and is also in an era of numerous challenges and increasing risks. Answering the question of what has happened to the world and how should we respond, Xi offered China’s proposition: build a community with a shared future for humanity and achieve shared and win-win development.
Actions hold the key to building a community with a shared future for humanity, the international community should promote partnership, security, growth, inter-civilization exchanges, and the building of a sound ecosystem, therefore.
In line with such notions, China has not only talked the talk but also walked the walk to put them into practice.
As a founding member of the UN and the first country to sign on the UN Charter, China actively looks for peaceful settlement of major regional disputes, such as the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, the Iranian nuclear issue, and conflicts in Afghanistan, Myanmar, the Middle East, and Syria, and has dispatched more than 40,000 peacekeepers to over 30 missions, contributing more peacekeepers than any other permanent member of the UN Security Council.
As a member of nearly all universal inter-governmental organizations and a signatory to over 500 international conventions, China has faithfully honored its commitments. In the face of COVID-19, China has actively responded to the UN-initiated Global Humanitarian Response Plan: a cash donation of 50 million U.S. dollars to the World Health Organization, assistance in kind to over 150 countries and international organizations, and medical exports to more than 200 countries and regions.
China has made an important contribution to the conclusion of the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement and its implementation guidelines. The country’s climate target for 2020 has been met ahead of schedule, representing a significant contribution to the global response to climate change.
A six-member Olympic team from Bosnia and Herzegovina is on their way to Beijing. They are envoys of friendship, not only to promote the people-to-people exchanges between China and Bosnia and Herzegovina but also to contribute to the world peace and solidarity together with all the 3000 athletes from 90 countries and regions.
As a Chinese old saying goes, A single flower does not make spring, while one hundred flowers in full blossom bring spring to the garden. we hope all the athletes will compete at their highest level and to make their own splendid performance, and make the spring more colorful and fruitful. I believe that the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games will bring us more hopes as the season of spring always brings to us.