The Olympics specializes in two rough categories of shameful behavior: 
in what it doesn't allow and in what it does.

In a barefaced and biased political decision, it denied credentials to 
the qualified Olympic teams from Iraq to come to Beijing and 
participate in the 2008 games.

But it hasn't so much as taken notice that national Olympics 
authorities in both Saudi Arabia and the Emirates have prevented women 
from competing
.

I don't how long the sham of the Olympics goes back. But certainly 
its claims to sportsmanlike rules have been traduced many times: in 
1936 in Nazi Germany, in 1972 after the massacre of the Israeli 
athletes at Munich, and next month in Beijing when the most ancient of 
prejudices against the competence of women will be allowed to exclude 
athletes simply because of their gender -- although there are many, many 
gender-specific competitions.