Our View: Bush will, and should, attend Olympics - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Our View: Bush will, and should, attend Olympics

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Posted: Wednesday, July 9, 2008 9:09 pm | Updated: 9:32 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

President Bush will attend the opening ceremonies of the Olympics in Beijing next month. It's the right decision, and good diplomacy.

There has been much talk about organizing a world leaders' boycott of the opening ceremonies - but not the games themselves - to protest China's harsh crackdown on Tibetan demands for autonomy.

A U.S. boycott would be a gratuitous insult to the Chinese, and would have no effect on Beijing's policy toward Tibet. It would threaten the fragile progress made by having Chinese officials agree to sit down with representatives of the Dalai Lama.

Plus, the U.S. needs China on a number of diplomatic fronts. China is the heavyweight in the six-party North Korean talks, and it could exert similar pressure on the junta in Myanmar. China's tacit support of odious regimes under the rubric of "noninterference" is one of its least appealing aspects, but a boycott isn't going to change that. Only continuous engagement will.

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