The Cold War brought tension to every aspect of competitions, whether this is the space race, territorial race, the arms race, and nuclear weaponry outdoing of each other. The Olympics were another way that the US and Soviet Union tried to show up each other through sports. In about four decades of these games, the US and Soviets earned countless medals, "proving" which one was better. During all these years, social media amplified opposing countries faults to show how desperate they were to win, for example, in 1966, Hungarian female athletes were given sex tests, because of the belief that they were men posing as women to play better. Also, the Soviets and Hungarians got into a fist fight during a water polo match. So much hatred had been created between countries because of WW2 aftermath and the new competitions, that 65 countries dropped out of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, including America. Sports are usually an escape for people from their stress, but in this case, they added to the battle of cold war tensions.

Summer Olympics 1952

Where: Helsinki, Finland
-To not cause tension, western and eastern competitors were separated in their bunk houses
-East and West Germany were forced to compete as one
- Soviet Unions first Olympics

Winter Olympics 1956

Where: Cortina D’Ampezzo, Italy
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-Soviets collect most medals
-Americans win figure skating, Tenley Albright for women’s, Hayes Alan for men’s.

Summer Olympics 1956

Where: Melbourne, Australia
-Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and PR of China refuse to compete
-Soviets and Hungary get in fist fights during water polo match

-John Wing proposes everyone walking out together at the end, this still happens.

Where: Budapest, Hungary
When: 1966
Sex tests are given to Soviets and Eastern Europeans for belief that the women were really men

Where: Mexico City, Mexico
When: 1968
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East Germany changes its banner

Summer Olympics 1972

Where: Munich, Germany
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11 Israeli competitors were killed by police, Soviets beat Americans in basketball by a point. East Germany wins 66 medals, Soviets 99, Americans 94.

Summer Olympics 1976

Where: Montreal, Canada
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East Germany wins 90 medals, Soviets and Americans are ahead by a little.

Winter Olympics of 1980

Where: Lake Placid, New York
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Americans beat Soviets in hockey, creating the famous movie “Miracle”.

Summer Olympics 1980

Where: Moscow, USSR

Olympics being held are threatened when Soviets invade Afghanistan, about 65 countries boycott, including America.

Summer Olympics 1984

Where: Los Angeles, USA

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Soviets and 14 others boycott Olympics. Private funding for Olympics raises $250 million.

Summer Olympics 1988

Where: Seoul, South Korea

North Korea drops out. Soviets beat Americans in basketball, they later let NBA players join the Olympics, making the “Dream Team”.
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Summer Olympics 1992

Where: Barcelona, Spain
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The Cold War is over, and the former Soviet players become a “unified team”.


Greenspan, Bud. 100 Greatest Olympic Moments. 1. 1. Los Angeles: General Publishing Group, 1995. 218. Print.

Kieran, John, and Arthur Daley. Olympic Games. 1. 1. Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1969. 470. Print.

Unknown. "Politics and the Olympics." logo. Guardian unlimited, Unknown. Web. 30 Apr 2012. <,9067,892902,00.html>.

Unknown. "The Cold War Sporting Front." Doping For Gold. PBS, June 6th, 2011. Web. April 30, 2012. <>.

Unknown. "The Olympics and Politics Collide." Voice of America. VOA, May 01, 2008. Web. 30 Apr 2012. <>.