Why Congress Should Not Honor One of the Most Notorious Doping Cheats of All Time
Not only was Rodchenkov cross-examined for the first time at the CAS hearings, but so was McLaren. The results were devastating. Despite that devastation—or perhaps because of it—these CAS decisions are not well known, primarily for one reason: the paltry coverage of the Times, especially compared to the countless column inches the Times had devoted to the now-discredited accounts of Rodchenkov and McLaren regarding the involvement of individual athletes in the doping scandal.
How the Times could provide such minimal coverage of these important April 2018 reasoned CAS decisions on matters on which the Times had extensively reported is inexplicable. By allowing the Russian athletes, for the very first time, to confront their accusers with cross-examination, the CAS was in a position to make startling revelations about Rodchenkov and McLaren.
Although sports doping is an international issue, the Times has focused instead on one country, based on a witness who has admitted lying and cheating, and an obscure Canadian law professor who issued a completely one-sided report. Indeed, Rodchenkov continues to bolster his credibility in the Times, publishing an op-ed piece there last September on, ironically, the horrors of Russian cheating.
Illustrating the international nature of sports doping, WADA’s most recent doping report—published in April 2018, reporting on the year 2016—disclosed 1,574 athlete doping violations. Russia, tied for sixth with India, had 69 of those, approximately 4 percent of the total. The five countries with more violations than Russia are Italy (147), France (86), the United States (76), Australia (75), and Belgium (73).
No one, however, is calling for a mass ban from the Olympics of any of these five countries. Certainly one reason for that is that no leading press organization has focused on any of them unfairly.