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Old 09-10-2019, 02:17 PM
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Has any country won a World team championship in any sport when ruled by a dictator


So the conditions to be met are as follows

Has to be a world cup sport
A team sport
Held every 2,3 or 4 years as most of them do
Can be a Olympics games
The country should have been ruled by 1 or more dictators between the tournament years or more.

I cannot think of any of the top of my head. I am veering towards Tito, Mussolini and other such years. Most other dictators probably ruled poor countries with no sporting achievements.

Surprise me.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:22 PM
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The Soviet Union won plenty of Olympic ice hockey gold medals. Does that count?
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:25 PM
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Also, Argentina won the 1978 FIFA soccer World Cup with Jorge Rafael Videla as dictator.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:26 PM
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Italy won the 1934 and 1938 soccer world cup.

Yugoslavia won the 1970 and 1978 basketball world championships.

If Olympic games count, Germany and Italy won the 1936 handball and soccer tournaments respectively.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:34 PM
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The Soviet Union/Russia won Olympic gold medals in Men's Volleyball in 1964, 1968, 1980, and 2012 and in Women's Volleyball in 1968, 1972, 1980, and 1988. China won Olympic gold medals in Women's Volleyball in 1984, 2004, and 2016. Cuba won Olympic gold medals in Women's Volleyball in 1992, 1996, and 2000. Poland won an Olympic gold medal in Men's Volleyball in 1976.

Last edited by Little Nemo; 09-10-2019 at 02:36 PM.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:35 PM
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I know this isn't GD/IMHO, but I am wondering what the OP is really asking with this thread. Is the premise that Western democracies are better at team sports than dictatorships? I don't see any reason why that would be the case.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
The Soviet Union/Russia won Olympic gold medals in Men's Volleyball in 1964, 1968, 1980, and 2012 and in Women's Volleyball in 1968, 1972, 1980, and 1988. China won Olympic gold medals in Women's Volleyball in 1984, 2004, and 2016. Cuba won Olympic gold medals in Women's Volleyball in 1992, 1996, and 2000. Poland won an Olympic gold medal in Men's Volleyball in 1976.
Speaking of Cuba, they have utterly dominated many international baseball contests during the Fidel Castro era.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:37 PM
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Can i change the condition to where the dictator came to power by a military or violent coup. Not where they got elected and liked power so much that they changed the rules or imprisoned their opposition leaders.

So has any country won a world sporting tournament after a violent military coup in their country.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
I know this isn't GD/IMHO, but I am wondering what the OP is really asking with this thread. Is the premise that Western democracies are better at team sports than dictatorships? I don't see any reason why that would be the case.

Yes, that is the reasoning behind my question.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Nansbread1 View Post
Can i change the condition to where the dictator came to power by a military or violent coup. Not where they got elected and liked power so much that they changed the rules or imprisoned their opposition leaders.

So has any country won a world sporting tournament after a violent military coup in their country.

The 1978 World Cup example still applies, then. Videla came to power in Argentina in a military coup in 1976. He was dictator of Argentina when Argentina won the 1978 FIFA soccer World Cup.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:44 PM
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Yes, that is the reasoning behind my question.
If anything, I'd expect dictatorship nations to field sports teams that practice even more gruelingly and intensely than Western democracies.
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Old 09-10-2019, 03:00 PM
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If anything, I'd expect dictatorship nations to field sports teams that practice even more gruelingly and intensely than Western democracies.
Yes when the Olympics was still confined to amateurs, it was often claimed that the USSR (and perhaps East German) teams were not really amateurs. As I recall, the hockey team was composed of soldiers whose real full time job was to practice hockey.
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Old 09-10-2019, 03:49 PM
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And the Soviet government came to power in the Bolshevik Revolution.

Castro came to power by overthrowing Batista.

Neither were democratic transfers of powe.
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Old 09-10-2019, 04:21 PM
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Old 09-10-2019, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Nansbread1 View Post
Can i change the condition to where the dictator came to power by a military or violent coup. Not where they got elected and liked power so much that they changed the rules or imprisoned their opposition leaders.
Of the examples given above, that would only possibly apply to Mussolini and Hitler, but neither won power directly as result of a popular vote. They were appointed Chancellor/Prime Minister and then consolidated power through violence or the threat of violence. So the condition doesn't change anything much. I also don't see why it should.

Last edited by Colibri; 09-10-2019 at 04:40 PM.
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Old 09-10-2019, 05:38 PM
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East Germany won 192 Olympic Gold medals (sorry, don't know how many were team sports.)
The Soviet Union won many world chess team championships (counting chess as a mind sport.)
China has won the World team table-tennis championships 21 times.
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Old 09-10-2019, 05:42 PM
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Anyway - why would a dictatorship do worse in team sports than a non-dictatorship?
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Old 09-10-2019, 05:46 PM
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Anyway - why would a dictatorship do worse in team sports than a non-dictatorship?
Generally dictatorships aren't the best places to live in and would experience a talent drain to more open countries, unless of course the athletes are given incentives to stay there.
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Old 09-10-2019, 05:51 PM
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Handball world champions:

Germany 38
Romania 61, 64, 70, 74
CSSR 67
USSR 82
Yugoslavia 86
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Old 09-10-2019, 05:55 PM
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Generally dictatorships aren't the best places to live in and would experience a talent drain to more open countries, unless of course the athletes are given incentives to stay there.
Didn't easily work for instance for the citizen of eastern block countries, especially those of the GDR. Some who flew were later killed in revenge by the Stasi.

ETA: so they had "incentives to stay there": Rifles to their heads.
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Last edited by EinsteinsHund; 09-10-2019 at 05:57 PM.
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Old 09-10-2019, 06:28 PM
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Generally dictatorships aren't the best places to live in and would experience a talent drain to more open countries, unless of course the athletes are given incentives to stay there.
During the Cold War the Soviet bloc made emigration quite difficult. Athletes could try to defect when their teams were competing internationally, but that could have repercussions on their family left behind. And star athletes were given incentives in terms of better income, housing, and access to luxury items than regular folk (although they wouldn't be nearly as well off as they would in the West).
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