Russia officially unveiled the Sochi Winter Games on Friday. Chinese President Xi Jinping attended the opening ceremony along with more than 40 heads of state, a number larger than the total of the previous two winter games.
Leaders from major Western countries including the US, Britain, France and Germany, however, were absent.
The Western media are not absent. However, they are doing everything but cheering for the Sochi Games - this is "Putin's Games" many of them claimed, while picking holes in this event.
Some say it is the journalistic nature of the Western media to be critical and ready to challenge authorities. But the excuse sounds so hypocritical when you look at the Western coverage of the 2012 London Summer Games, which was much more friendly and festive.
Since the ending of the Cold War, only the 2008 Beijing Games and the ongoing Sochi Games have experienced such criticism. It is surprising how much the Western media stick to their bigotry.
The West is currently still leading the development of human civilization. But the noises around the Sochi Games have once again shown the narrow mind of the West. Such a value orientation could be a threat to the world's future.
Russia is much smaller and weaker than the Soviet Union. No matter how "tough" Putin is, today's Russia will no longer fall back to the Stalin or Brezhnev times. But the West's endless criticism of Russia under Putin's rule appears no different from the elder generations' stances against the Kremlin decades ago.
Western people may not notice that what they are doing to Russia may impede the country's transformation from a superpower to a normal state. They are planting old seeds of rivalry on a land that has become part of globalization.
Putin has not been cooperative with the West over the issues of Syria and Edward Snowden. Russia, disoriented during Boris Yeltsin's era, has been solidified under Putin's leadership. These all make some in the West feel uneasy. The emotional outpouring over the Sochi Games looks more like Putin is paying the price.
The aggressive political strategy of the Soviet Union used to make the West restless. But today, strategically the West has nothing to worry about besides fighting terrorism. The ruthless pressuring of Russia and the alert against China are pushing the West to the verge of another round of confrontation. Enthusiasts for a "New Cold War" could jeopardize a historic chance for a better world.
The good news is that more people in the world are supporting the Sochi Games. We wish the Sochi Games great success and smooth development for Russia.