After some consideration I’ve decided that I’m going to take no notice at all of the World Cup in Qatar this autumn.
Here’s just a few of the reasons:
If anyone believes an organization as corrupt as FIFA managed to hold a fair and clean bidding process, they’re mental.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2022_FIFA_World_Cup_controversies#Corruption_controversies – smoke without fire? Doubt it.
- Workers’ and human rights:
https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2022/oct/23/qatar-labour-policy-workers-world-cup-2022-expert-verdict – “I have spoken to thousands of them. They don’t know their rights; their contracts are violated”; “Yes, a lot of workers got employment but it was under exploitative conditions.”; “Once the World Cup’s finished, that’s it. The eyes of the world will no longer be on Qatar. They’ll just go back to how they were.”; “The abolition of kafala worked for a few months, but today the system is effectively still in place.”
https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2022/10/qatar-labour-reform-unfinished-and-compensation-still-owed-as-world-cup-looms/ – with just one month to go until the kick-off, Amnesty produced this damning report.
“abuses remain rife across the country”
“Thousands of workers across all projects are still facing issues such as delayed or unpaid wages, denial of rest days, unsafe working conditions, barriers to changing jobs, and limited access to justice, while the deaths of thousands of workers remain uninvestigated.”
“Qatar’s World Cup organizing body, the Supreme Committee, also introduced enhanced labour standards for workers, but only on official tournament sites such as stadia, although these cover just a small proportion of workers on projects essential to the World Cup, and just 2% of Qatar’s workforce.” – sportswashing, pure and simple.
- No press freedom:
https://www.theguardian.com/football/2022/oct/15/qatar-world-cup-tv-reports-restrictions – what are they hiding?
“Broadcasters, such as the BBC and ITV, will effectively be barred from filming at accommodation sites, such as those housing migrant workers”
- Environmental concerns:
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/oct/07/10000-litres-day-pitch-qatar-world-cup-huge-impact-gulf-waters – raising their already very high daily usage of water by watering football pitches that should never have been put there in the first place.
“roughly 30 desalination plants burning through 300,000 barrels of crude oil a day” in order to have enough water for this absurd practice.
So for all those reasons, along with their horrific anti-gay laws, I’ll be taking a break from football from 20th November to 18th December. It just wouldn’t feel right to watch it.