Time.news – New problems on the organization of the Tokyo Olympic Games: the organizers fired the director of the opening ceremony, Kentaro Kobayashi, for a joke he had made about the Holocaust and which was deemed anti-Semitic.
It is yet another image damage that obscures the Games, which emerged in the hours in which the Japanese media reveal that Emperor Naruhito refused to use the word “feast” in the speech in which he will declare the Olympics open, confirming the fact that he is against the decision to hold the Games despite the pandemic.
The opening ceremony of the XXXII Olympic Games, postponed for one year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, will be held on Friday 23 July at the Olympic stadium in the Japanese capital.
According to government sources, the emperor will also avoid using the word ‘celebrate’ during the proclamation of the opening of the Olympics. In fact, considering the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the government and the organizing committee are planning to omit the word that has always been commonly used in all opening ceremonies.
Emperor of Japan, Naruhito
Empress Masako will not be present in compliance with the significant reduction of participants to prevent the spread of the virus. Members of the imperial family will not attend any other Olympic events following the unprecedented decision not to admit spectators to the Olympics.
The emperor Naruhito is the third emperor to have agreed to declare the Olympics open. In 1998 his father, Emperor Akihito opened the Nagano Winter Games while his grandfather, Emperor Hirohito, proclaimed the Tokyo Olympics of 1964 and the Sapporo Winter Olympics of 1972 open.
The Olympic Charter provides that the president of the host country proclaims the Games open. The card lists examples of how to declare the opening and contains the word ‘celebrate’ but the Japanese organizers are trying to refrain from using a jubilant expression as much as possible.
Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto expects the opening ceremony to be a ‘solemn’ moment rather than a festival.
The organizing committee had called the Tokyo Games a “recovery and reconstruction” event after the earthquake and subsequent tsunami of March 2011 but this was overshadowed by the coronavirus pandemic.