Who Were Those Men In Blue In London?

As the Olympic flame relay continued on its course, members of the flame holding relayers were being surrounded by men dressed in blue tracksuits. Many Londoners wondered exactly who were the men whose aggressive manner of shoving aside protestors indicated they possessed some form of official authority. Each time protestors ran to grab the torch, the men in blue intervened and created a cordon around the relayers. Offcially, they are termed, “flame attendants” who are employed by the Beijing Olympic Committee which orgnized the entire relay process. Their job is ensuring the flame never goes out, but, in case it does, they are responsible for relighting the torch and sending it on its merry way.

Although British police officials insist the men in blue lack authority in their country, the behavior of the flame guardians on the streets of London demonstrated they did possess some power to shove people out of the way and perform very aggressively in defense of the flame. Matt Whitticase, of Free Tibet UK, believes the British government has caved into Chinese demands they be allowed to protect the torch in their own manner.

  • mendy lewin

    if protesters didn’t behave like they did, men in blue wouldn’t be needed altogether.
    if organizations would stop using every other occasion to gain media exposure and at the same time spoil the life and dreams of others, scenes we have witnessed would not exist.
    yes they defend righteous causes,no they do not have the right approach.
    yes tibet is a great cause and human rights needs to improve in china and in many other places,no the olympic games are not davos forums or the UN,its sports. leave politics to politicians and sports to athletes.
    not happy about the pace? exert your free rights to protest on capitol hill and get those senators and congressman moving on what you consider pressing issues!
    don’t condemn violence with violent protests.
    don’t defend free speech by attacking my tranquility.