Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2010: #8 Escalating Tensions on Korean Peninsula Cast Shadow on PyeongChang 2018

GamesBids.com presents the third annual Top Ten list of Olympic Bid Stories for 2010. These stories impacted the course of Olympic bids, or the Olympic bid process, and formed interesting plotlines for the year. We’ll run them down from 10th to 1st during the holiday season.

Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2010: #8 Escalating Tensions on Korean Peninsula Cast Shadow on PyeongChang 2018

When North Korea shelled South Korean islands in one of its heaviest attacks since the Korean War, rising tensions on the peninsula caused observers to question the viability of the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic bid under such conditions.

PyeongChang 2018 said in an official statement that tensions had existed on the Korean peninsula for 60 years, but has never threatened high-profile international events including the 1988 Summer Olympics and the 2002 football World Cup.

The statement said, “Throughout this time our country has hosted many successful and safe (sports) events…as well as many high-profile international meetings and conferences such as the recent G20 Seoul Summit. PyeongChang 2018 and the South Korean Government will ensure that the 2018 Winter Games are safe and secure if we have the honour of being selected as host city in Durban next year.”

But the media-hyped looming threat of further military action from both sides will remain a marketing challenge for the bid team and perceptions of voting IOC members must be managed to ensure crucial votes for the South Korean bid aren’t lost.

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About Robert Livingstone


A senior producer, award-winning journalist and author, covering Olympic bid business as founder of GamesBids.com as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.