When we were discussing this edition back in March, Karl Lennartz and I agreed that we would take the ever present idea of “war and peace” as the central theme because this summer is the 100th anniversary of the First World War. Karl, who had been co-editor of this Journal, decided to write an article about the the Games of the VI Olympiad which were to have been celebrated in 1916 in Berlin. These did not take place because of the war. There was no one better qualified, for he had already written a book on the subject in 1978.
Now Karl has left us, and Manfred Lämmer took on the painful task of writing his obituary. Karl was prevented from leaving us his last contribution because his illness was so serious. I have had to step in. I hope have succeeded in doing him justice.
To be sure, any essay on Berlin 1916 cannot be done without mentioning those who perished in the war. More than nine million soldiers lost their lives, among them, at least 155 Olympic participants. Seven of these are remembered by our international team of authors. In addition Christian Wacker took on the task of drawing a link in his article between the Ekecheiria of antiquity and the present day which regrettably continues to be a time of unrest.
In This Issue:
“‘Peace and War’ at the Olympics”
by Christian Wacker
That Karl Lennartz will live on in our Journal is certain. That will be ensured by the many literary references to his many articles and books. Besides that he managed to persuade Professor Hans W. Giessen to write a profile of the German-French linguist Michel Bréal, importat to us as the “inventor” of the marathon race. And the article about Robert Dovers’ “Olympick Games”, written by Peter Radford, the 1960 Olympic bronze medallist in the 100 m, is even illustrated with a photo taken by Karl a few years ago on the side.
Some other authors who have contributed to the Olympic kaleidoscope in this issue also deserve a mention: Part of the legacy of the Sydney Games is the Olympic Cauldron. Richard Cashman reports on the subsequent use of this famous symbol. Just before the Youth Games in Nanjing Roland Naul recalls Coubertin’s vision and the present-day tasks of Olympic Education. The New Zealand Olympic rowing champion of 1968, Ross Collinge, presents his researches about an “Olympic Soldier” – his fellow-countryman George Cooke, who rowed in the 1932 Eight and succumbed to his wounds in 1941 on Crete. Philip Barker has brought us his Sochi memories, and Willy Schoevaerts writes about Belgium’s Olympic participation of 1896 in Athentes, restricted to two cycling journalists, but even so in the view of the author, this was the “beginning of a great adventure”.
Among the regular features there is, along with the reviews of recently published books and the obituaries of deceased Olympians, the series of biographies of IOC Members. Unfortunately part XVII cannot appear this time. The manuscript, written by Ian Buchanan and Wolf Lyberg on a typewriter, is in Karl Lennartz’ estate. After the formalities have been completed, we will hopefully be able to soon continue the series.
– Volker Kluge, Editor