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Filling the Information Gap: Radio Free Europe–Radio Liberty and the Politics of Accreditation at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games

Autor: Toby C. Rider
Revista: The International Journal of the History of Sports Nº 32 (1)
Link: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09523367.2014.958666#.VUjTwfntlHw

Due to the decision of the Soviet Union and nearly all of its East European satellites to withdraw from the 1984 Los Angeles Summer Games, the communist media provided audiences in the Soviet bloc with few reports on the sporting events in the Olympic city. When Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, broadcasters funded by the US government, attempted to fill this ‘information gap’ by beaming coverage of the Los Angeles Games behind the Iron Curtain, the Soviet Union protested to the International Olympic Committee.

They claimed, with a mixture of fact and fiction, that the Radios were tools of the American intelligence establishment and accused them of broadcasting ‘subversive’ propaganda to Eastern Europe and the USSR.

Stirred into action by this Soviet manoeuvre, leading spokesmen for the Radios were joined by government officials, private citizens, US Olympic Committee members and the American media in a concerted attempt not only to defend the work of the broadcasters, but also to secure their press accreditation for Los Angeles.