We’ll be right back after this brief announcement about soccer and North Korea

If you’re a soccer fan, you’ll know that FIFA has awarded the World Cup venue for 2022 to the nation of Qatar. (It’ll be held in November and December because of Quatar’s dire summer weather.) Sadly, much of the work on building the stadiums (stadia?) is being done by North Korean slave laborers, who must turn over much of their earnings to their government when they return to the DPRK. Over at Heather’s Homilies, Heather Hastie has an informative post about this situation, about Qatar’s bribing FIFA and others with £117 million, and about the sad situation of women’s rights in Quatar. Go read her new post “Soccer fans are funding the North Korean nuclear programme.”

Here’s one of the several “be modest” posters in Qatar that Heather highlights. No stars on your tee-shirts!


  1. Posted July 14, 2017 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    Ask England fans (assuming they qualify) not to take off their shirts? You’re having a laugh!

    • Posted July 14, 2017 at 7:36 am | Permalink

      As i is there might still be a war that will stop that tournament, between the Saudi Sunnis & the Iranian Shias…

    • DrBrydon
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

      I wonder if there will be alcohol?

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:33 am | Permalink

      Good point. As long as they’re not literally watching football on the Arctic tundra England fans will always take off their shirts, so I suspect they’ll probably do the same in one of the world’s hottest countries.

      • Nobody Special
        Posted July 14, 2017 at 10:55 am | Permalink

        Fans from Newcastle class the Arctic tundra as positively tropical. Absolute zero is ‘a bit parky, mind’.

  2. rickflick
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    These cultural sensitivities resemble those in the US 100 years ago. Swimsuits for men covered the knees and shoulders.

  3. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Stadion is Greek

    It was Latinized I guess?

    I call it Greek, so stadiums.

  4. busterggi
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Its always a good idea to hold an international event in a country that discriminates against most of those nations.

  5. BJ
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    I can’t believe they let it stay in Qatar after the dealings between their government and Sep Blatter (which absolutely sounds like the name of a forgotten Bond Villain) were exposed.

    Oh, and the labor not being done by NK slave laborers is being done by slave laborers from other Middle Eastern nations. The construction companies lure them away from home with promises of lucrative work, force them to turn in their passports, and refuse to give them back unless they do the work and do it for almost no money at all (and certainly not the money they were promised). They are building stadiums through slavery. Oh, and since they’re all just slaves, the working, living, and eating/drinking conditions are horrendous, and many workers have died.

    Just horrifying.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

      It’s not just the 2022 WC, it’s the 2018 one too, which went to Russia. It’s an absolutely shambolic/blatantly dodgy couple of decisions which simply should not stand.
      They shouldn’t have stood in the first place, because of the likelihood of corruption; they shouldn’t have stood because of the combined idiocy of staging two WCs back-to-back in a couple of the most repressive countries on earth one of which is so hot that for it to be bearable for anyone it has to be staged in the winter; and the way that Qatar treats its ‘workers’ should be nothing more than a shitty cherry on a cake made of balls. The corruption in football borders on the comical.

  6. Randy schenck
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    Very good article over there at Heather’s. I left my comments there.

  7. DrBrydon
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    I wonder how the embargo by the gulf states will affect it, assuming it’s not resolved. I gather that it’s restricted the ways you can get there.

    • Diane G.
      Posted July 15, 2017 at 12:56 am | Permalink

      I was wondering about that too.

  8. Mike
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    What kind of lunatics grant Qatar a W.C. ,a tournament normally played in the summer months ,during the competing nations close season.? they changed it after an outcry to Winter, in the middle of the Nations Football Season.,It stank of corruption from the day it was announced, as for the Russian Tournament,their Fans pride themselves on their Racism, which is endemic throughout the Country, why put black player’e through this? Well it’s obvious ,they received massive kick backs. Both Tournament should have been cancelled.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:26 am | Permalink

      They could still do it, if there was the desire and the moral courage; and if everyone at FIFA wasn’t knotted up in the shadiness of the deals and therefore beholden to the good will and continuing silence of the Russian and Qatari governments.

      Qatar will be bad enough, but Russia and its demented, ultra-right hardcore supporters is arguably an even worse prospect for anyone who wants to go and watch their country play football at a World Cup.

  9. Saul Sorrell-Till
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    There have been a few mutterings about boycotts on some of the more liberal football sites, but nothing organised and nothing that’s likely to tweak the nose of FIFA.

    There are any number of far more deserving countries out there who would do a far better job of hosting a WC, even at such short notice. They’re just not sufficiently greedy and corrupt to ever win the nomination process – besides, FIFA is far too spineless ever to renege at this stage, even though anyone with a brain can see that this is what should be done. It wouldn’t even have to be framed as a moral argument either – these countries are just logistically, geographically and culturally terrible places to watch football.

    • darrelle
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 10:13 am | Permalink

      This sounds awful. I don’t follow football so I was unaware of any of this, though I’ve heard much over the past several years of FIFA corruption.

      It would be very nice to see countries begin to pull out of these world cups.

  10. Fernando Peregrin
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Corruption in Qatar

    Rosell (1) claimed 30 million from Qatar to fix the 2022 World Cup

    The UDEF (2) affirms that the ex-president of Barça dedicated the money of the candidate country to obtain the votes of the African federations.

    (1) Alexandre Rosell i Feliu, better known as Sandro Rosell, was president of Fútbol Club Barcelona (Barça) between 2010 and 2014, and a Spanish marketing entrepreneur.

    (2) Economic and Fiscal Delinquency Unit (UDEF). Spanish National Police
    It assumes the investigation and prosecution of criminal activities, nationally and internationally, in matters of economic and fiscal delinquency, as well as operational coordination and technical support to the respective Territorial Units.

  11. Mack
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    What’s going to happen to club football being played during Nov and Dec? Professional leagues around the world may have to shut down as their best players are away on international duty… Its hard to believe powerful leagues (English Premier League etc.) Would allow this unless they’re going to be compensated £££. Also agree with previous posts – football without Carlsberg in a plastic bottle (or a steaming cup of Bovril for that metter) just wouldn’t be the same!

    • Fernando Peregrin
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      Sorry, Mack, you are right… escept that the Premier League is not on top of the UEFA rankings for club competitions.

      So your “English Premier League etc.” may better be writen as “Spain LaLiga, etc.” (this is, I’m afraid, pure chavinism on my side. My fault!)

      The UEFA ranking of leagues is:

      (1 to 11)

      1 Spain (LaLiga) 23.000 20.214 23.928 20.142 1.714 88.998 0/7
      2 Germany 14.714 15.857 16.428 14.571 1.714 63.284 0/7
      3 England (Premier League) 16.785 13.571 14.250 14.928 2.285 61.819 0/7
      4 Italy 14.166 19.000 11.500 14.250 1.333 60.249 0/6
      5 France 8.500 10.916 11.083 14.416 1.333 46.248 0/6
      6 Russia 10.416 9.666 11.500 9.200 0.800 41.582 0/5
      7 Portugal 9.916 9.083 10.500 8.083 1.333 38.915 0/6
      8 Belgium 6.400 9.600 7.400 12.500 0.800 36.700 0/5
      9 Ukraine 7.833 10.000 9.800 5.500 0.800 33.933 0/5
      10 Turkey 6.700 6.000 6.600 9.700 0.800 29.800 1/5
      11 Netherlands 5.916 6.083 5.750 9.100 0.900 27.749 1/5


      As you can see, LaLiga have 86.998 points vs. 61.819 of the Premier League. And Real Madrid and to a less extend, Barça, are enlarging the gap every season.

      Real Madrid vs. Barça, El Clásico, in Miami
      “The absurd ticket prices of El Clásico “friendly” in Miami to play on July 29″

      • Merilee
        Posted July 14, 2017 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for the July 29 reminder. Go Barça!!
        (i’m so not a sports fan, but do like to watch MSN (Messi, Suarez, Neymar).

      • Posted July 14, 2017 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

        Your list only reflects how well clubs do in European competition. If you want to talk about power, it would be better to look at financial strength. The English Premier League wins that one by a mile. In fact, we have two leagues in the top ten: the EFL Championship, which is our second tier, is the eighth richest football league in the World.

  12. C. Morano
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    We do everything to DESTROY & BURY Qatar’s culture and value. We must show zero respect for stone age traditions.

  13. Merilee
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    No Stars? Dr. Seuss’ Sneetches would not be able to attend, as many of thrm have “stars upon thars.” ( apologies for the obscure literary reference…)

  14. Tom
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    When the WC was granted to Qatar I assumed that any country frivolous enough to waste enormous amounts of public money on this sort of entertainment could throw its hat into the ring.
    Hopefully, Western Europe, after recklessly pouring taxpayers money into WC and Olympics black holes will not consider any more stupid expenditure and leave that to those dodgy governments desperate to pay for a propaganda boost.

  15. aplarue
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    Attendees should strip down en masse. Will Qatar really punish 100,000 people in front of the entire world? If they did, maybe even the Regressive Leftist zombies would open their eyes.

  16. Paul S
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    There’d be plenty of outrage if that sign was in a western country and the pictures were a hijab, niqab and burka.

    • Tom
      Posted July 14, 2017 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

      Such an official sign would never see the light of day in the UK.
      The UK government has pandered to the immigrant voter (especially the muslim) for decades.
      They are a components of the “special interest groups” the Welsh, Scottish, Irish, Cornish and so on, which successive governments have attempted to convince that it really, really cares for them.
      If there is such a thing as cynical multi culturalism it is manifest in the UK parliament.
      Now London is becoming the home for Russian and Chinese money launderers I fully expect they will soon join the “special interest groups”

  17. W.Benson
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Just be happy Saudi Arabia is not hosting the World Cup.

  18. Steve
    Posted July 14, 2017 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

    Fuck Qatar.

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