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SPOTLIGHT: A BOLT OF OLYMPIC HISTORY THAT WILL LAST

Last week, it was Michael Phelps reminding us that the Olympics are more than a passing photo op or filler for your Facebook feed. The American swimmer's 12th individual medal matched a record of another famous Olympic athlete — from more than 2,100 years ago! Leonidas of Rhodes, a runner, had won 12 solo medals at four Games between 164 and 152 BC, considered one of the world's oldest records.


Last night it was Usain Bolt's chance to reach for Olympic "immortality," taking home his third straight 100-meter dash title. In a year littered with doping scandals, some athletes can still achieve legendary status through sheer talent alone. The 9.81 seconds it took him to complete 100 meters in yesterday's final, was actually the slowest of the three winning Olympic results for the now 29-year-old Jamaican star. But perhaps it was victory that carried the most meaning. "It wasn't the perfect race, but the fact is I won," he told reporters after the race.


Bolt was bullish about his chances to add to his legend, ahead of the 200m and 4x100m relay events later this week, aiming for a "triple triple" of three gold medals in three sprints in three consecutive Games. The crowning of the "fastest man on earth" is perhaps the singular defining moment for each Olympics. Doing it three Games running is a feat (and feet!) for the ages.

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Ideas

Ukraine Has Exposed The Bankruptcy Of Germany's "Never Again" Pacifism

A group of pro-peace German intellectuals published a letter asking the country not to deliver heavy weapons to Ukraine, but they're missing the point completely. Germany needs to reinvent itself in order to face today's challenges — and threats.

The Bundestag, or German federal government, meets at the Reichstag building in Berlin.

Sascha Lehnartz

-OpEd-

BERLIN — When even the brightest minds — some of whom have shaped the intellectual life of this republic for decades — suddenly seem at a loss, it can mean one of two things. Either the clever minds are not as clever as we were always led to believe. Or the times have changed so brutally that old pieces of wisdom are suddenly no longer valid.

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If you don't want to give up your childhood faith in the Federal Republic of Germany quite yet, you can settle on the second option.

Alexander Kluge, one of Germany's most versatile artists, founded a television production company, proving that there can even be television for intellectuals. Journalist and prominent feminist Alice Schwarzer has done more for the liberation of women in this country than anyone else. Yet Schwarzer and Kluge, along with another two dozen intellectuals, have written an open letter that basically recommends Ukraine to submit to Vladimir Putin for the sake of the authors' peace of mind.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

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