Exactly one month until Sochi; Russia claims they are ready for Olympics
Right now, we are exactly one month away from the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
The Winter Games are scheduled to begin Feb. 7.
Just one month to go until the Sochi Olympics and, according to NBC News, Russia does seem ready.
There’s snow, and in case it gets warmer, Russia has almost 1 million cubic meters of snow, frozen in reserves.
The stadiums are built, although there is still some construction.
The head of Sochi 2014, Dmitry Chernyshenko, said Russia is on schedule.
“Yes, no doubts we’re absolutely ready,” he said. “We were training, learning for seven years.”
The official clothing for the games is out too.
Russia didn’t have a little ski village at the base of slopes near Sochi, so it built one.
The entire town is brand new and so are hundreds of miles of roads and train tracks leading here.
With more than $50 billion spent so far, many say this is the most expensive Olympics ever.
This is Vladimir Putin’s baby.
He’s been testing out the venues.
These games may be as much about showing that the Russian bear is out of hibernation as they are about sports.
But terrorism has come back to Russia with two attacks just last month.
And the militant leader of the Muslim North Caucuses has said the games are a target.
Russia’s response is hard to miss.
Tens of thousands of police and intelligence agents have descended on Sochi watching for terrorists.
And according to investigative journalist Andrey Soldatov, watching everyone who comes here, after the government last November passed a decree to collect logs of communications data.
When you come to Sochi for the Olympics, your phones and computers will be tapped officially.
“Yes, that’s official policy,” Soldatov said. “All your communications will be exposed to the Russian secret services.”
Officials say security restrictions will get even tighter; people will be required to have special badges to get anywhere near the Olympic venues.
They’re calling the initiative “The Ring of Steel” effectively locking down the Olympic grounds.
Sochi will put Russia back on the world stage getting ready for the sports may prove to be the easy part.