a lesson in geopolitics

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The World Football Cup began in London this week with a match at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium. This statement is true but may need clarification: it might sound like a report from a parallel universe in which the Fifa nobs sent their http://www.49ersofficialauthenticonline.com/24-kwaun-williams-super-bowl-jersey.html 2018 tournament to England not Russia.

The World Football Cup is not quite the actual World Cup. It is not even a consolation event for the countries temporarily locked out of the World Cup, those obscure places such as Italy, the Netherlands and the United States, who failed to qualify. It is more of a consolation prize in life.

It is for those places locked out of Fifa and, in almost every case, the international community as a whole: the world’s outcasts, the dispossessed, the not-quite nations, the once-were nations and in many cases never-will-be nations. Some are not geographical entities at all, such as Japan’s Korean minority. Some are intermittently, and almost always unhappily, in the news: like the Romany people and the Rohingya of Myanmar (neither of whom qualified).
There is also an undercurrent of humour and satire. Among the 47 members of the Confederation of International Football Associations (Conifa) are Yorkshire, admitted too late for this tournament, and Cascadia, a greenish, libertarian, un-Trumpian confection with a slight whiff of dope, covering British Columbia and the north-western states of the US.
But the overwhelming theme is tragedy. The opening match at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium was between the reigning champions, Abkhazia (a breakaway from former Soviet Georgia), and Tibet. Hardly any of the Tibetan players or supporters have even been there. Their parents and grandparents were forced into exile after China invaded their country in 1951. “These players live all over the world,” says Tenzin Kunga from the unofficial Tibetan embassy in London. “But they are all Tibetans. I have never been there myself. But I dream of Tibet, always.”
The stadium was not quite as grand as the royal name suggests. This was the home ground of non-league Enfield Town, less pretentiously known as Brent Urban Youth jersey Donkey Lane. About 300 people turned up to watch, first, Tibet bravely restrict Abkhazia to three goals and then Northern Cyprus, the Cypriot Turks, take on Karpatalya in a skilful and combative match that ended in a sending-off, a punch-up and a 1-1 draw.
The Turkish half of Cyprus, unrecognised by the world, has 32 teams in two leagues (“Not professional,” http://www.officialcoyotesonline.com/Anthony_Duclair_Jersey I was told, “but the players are well-paid”). They cannot even play against anyone from their protectors, Turkey, because even President Erdoğan quails before Fifa’s rules.
Karpatalya, or Carpathian Ruthenia, is a Hungarian-speaking enclave, known to historians as the shortest-lived state in history. It declared itself independent from Czechoslovakia on 15 March 1939 and was annexed http://www.buccaneersshopnfljersey.com/J-R-Sweezy-Jersey by Hungary the next day.
It is now in Ukraine, which tries to stop the people speaking their own language. Or so their only visible supporters, Andrew Shaw Jersey two passing Hungarians, told the locals on the terraces, who were themselves the kind of affable, mildly eccentric types that somehow gravitate towards non-league grounds. They went to a football match and a geopolitics lesson broke out. The World Football Cup is like that.
It is a biennial event and this is its third rendition. There Charles Clay Youth jersey had been a predecessor body to Conifa but it collapsed in 2010. The leading lights in its revival were Per-Anders Blind, a referee (he makes the joke first – “I’m the blind ref”) who is a Sami from Swedish Lapland, and Sascha Düerkop, a German football shirt collector who, having completed the Fifa set, was working his way through the non-Fifa teams and thus had the best contacts. cheap nfl jerseys wholesale jerseys cheap nfl jerseys wholesale jerseys cheap nfl jerseys wholesale jerseys

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