On this day: Moscow’s 1980 Olympic Games began


The 1980 Encounters were the first Olympic Games to be staged in Eastern Europe, and persist the only Summer Olympics held there. They were also the word go Games to be held in a socialist country until the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The Olympics were disrupted by a blacklisting spearheaded by U.S. president Jimmy Carter, part of the protest against the December 1979 Soviet raid of Afghanistan. Almost 50 nations did not participate in the 1980 Summer Olympics, be produced ending in the lowest athlete turnout since 1956.

During the closing ceremony, “Misha” the brook — the Olympic mascot for the 1980 Moscow Games — appeared with a slash in it’s eye, which became a truly iconic moment. 

Read more: Sustain necessity: Designing a mascot for the 1980 Moscow Olympics

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