To: Select Swimming Media
From: George Block, President, World Swimming Coaches Assn.
Date: 20 September 2018
Re: WADA Reinstatement of Russia
STATEMENT FROM THE WSCA BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Board of Directors of the World Swimming Coaches Association expresses our profound disappointment and disgust at WADA’s reinstatement of Russia. We are completely in support of the position and statements of the Honorable Linda Helleland and USADA CEO Travis Tygart.
It seems that WADA did not learn any lessons from the world financial collapse of 2007-2011. In that situation, the United States had banks that were “too big to fail.” Those “too big to fail” banks crashed the world economy. Today WADA told us that they have “too big to fail” nations. That will crash world sport.
WADA needs to go the way of Lehman Brothers. Just as Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, today WADA has demonstrated both moral and leadership bankruptcy. Lehman Brothers, a once-respected institution, is no more. The same should be true for WADA. It is bankrupt and should no longer be propped up by the governments of the world.
Today’s decision could either be viewed as the end of clean sport or the beginning. If we allow WADA to fade into moral bankruptcy and urge Minister Helleland and Mr. Tygart to start over with a real, credible, new anti-doping agency, this could be a fresh beginning for clean sport.
Leaving it to WADA to re-test Russian samples sometime by June 31 (in a country where accidents, power failures and heart attacks happen with some frequency) strains all credibility and is a dagger to the heart of all clean athletes.
Mr. Reedie has killed WADA’s credibility. Let it die. Today should mark the beginning of a new, untainted effort in support of the world’s clean athletes.