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3 The western media have given the greatest attention to glasnost in the Soviet media, and to debate in the Supreme Soviet. In fact, political and social reform in the Soviet Union under Gorbachev goes well beyond these two phenomena. The restructuring in all aspects of Soviet Society permits greater individual and organizational initiative. This change is particularly significant in the realm of sports, where, in the past, centralized authority has determined all policy and development related to sports activity. Restructuring in the Soviet political sector has also been significant for sports at the international level. In the past, political imperatives were likely to be the crucial factors in decisions related to the participation by Soviet athletes in international sporting events. Under perestroika, the Summer Olympic Games held in Seoul, South Korea were almost free of political controversycertainly the most conflictfree, in a political sense, games in more than 25 years.4 It is the restructuring of Soviet society, as opposed to the openness characterizing its implementation, thus, which has had the greatest effects on sports.

3Mikhail Gorbachev, Perestroika: New Thinking For Our Country and the World (New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1987), 59.

4"All Out for Glory," Sports Illustrated, Summer 1988 (Special Issue), 67. David


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