CSIT President Bruno Molea followed an invitation to the museum of Tortosa on Thursday. It was a visit to a venue of amazing sports research accompanying the 6th World Sports Games 2019 in this historical interesting Catalonian city. The Unió de Consells Esportius of Catalonia (UCEC), which is a very important CSIT partner, presents a temporary exhibition that investigates the origins of the Popular Olympics in Europe and Catalonia.
One of the main topics is the development of the People’s Olypiade after Barcelona had lost the bid to Berlin for hosting the Olympic Games in 1936. As a protest against Nazi Germany alternative Popular Games were organized in Barcelona. Spain was about to boycott Berlin when the political system changed dramatically. The alternate games were prohibited by dictator Franco after 12.000 athletes had already registered. The event was never held, as a result of the outbreak of the System change. So the opening ceremony was also the end. With the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War just as the games were to begin and cancelled on the same day. Some athletes never made it to Barcelona as the borders had been closed, while many who were in the city for the beginning of the games made a hasty exit. Protest against the „Hitler games“ in Berlin was strictly prohibited. Even athletes stayed in Catalonia to fight shoulder to shoulder with Catalonian rebells against Franco’s troops.
Emmanuelle Bonnet and Marion Chaizemartin, representing the French CSIT member FSGT in Tortosa, additionally invited Missis Meritxell Roigé i Pedrola, the mayor of Tortosa, and a CSIT delegation led by President Bruno Molea to the Seminari building in Tortosa to point out the historical importance of French working class heroes who had lost their lives fighting against the Franco system.
The development of CSIT World Sports Games (WSG), which are held in Tortosa recently, can tell a lot of stories about the movement of European workers as well. It is based on the principles of the fight against dictatorship and solidarity in a peaceful world of sports. „Besides taking care of the future, it is a very important task to investigate the origins of our worldwide movement“, President Molea said. „Tortosa has done great work by bringing light into a period of basic sports and workers history.“