Who knew What, When and Where? by Alan Abrahamson, 3Wiresports.com

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Alan Abrahamson wrote this piece today on the Independent Commission Report from WADA on the Russian doping crisis.

There are many moving parts, and there is much confusion. Alan Abrahamson provides not only clarity and reminds us that we are in historical times.

A fine piece of writing by Alan, one of his best, and one of his most important.

Who knew what, when? And what is to be done?

The World Anti-Doping Agency-commissioned report that shines a long-overdue spotlight on Russian doping in track and field begs a question in Russian history. As Lenin himself wrote in the famous pamphlet published in 1902: what is to be done?

At the same time, and though the report, released Monday, has little to nothing to do with the United States, a bit of political history from the American archives is worth noting, too. From the Watergate years: who knew what, and when?

Make no mistake.

On the surface, this report is about track and field.

Not really.

This is about the intersection of sport and politics, indeed domestic and geopolitics at its highest, most complex, indeed most nuanced levels. Its roots are in the way countries can, and do, lean on sports to advance nationalistic agendas of all sorts.

The WADA-appointed three-member Independent Commission upon the release of the report Monday in Geneva: Canadian lawyer and professor Richard McLaren, former WADA president Richard Pound and German law enforcement official Guenter Younger // photo Getty Images

The WADA-appointed three-member Independent Commission upon the release of the report Monday in Geneva: Canadian lawyer and professor Richard McLaren, former WADA president Dick Pound and German law enforcement official Guenter Younger // photo Getty Images

The report is lengthy, more than 300 pages.

Much like the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's "Reasoned Decision" in the Lance Armstrong matter, made public in 2012, and for the same reason, it reads like a John le Carré spy novel.

That reason: it's designed not just for insiders but for everyone.

The report is rich with Olympics 101, spelling out the acronym- and influence-rich scene, explaining who is who and what is what -- for instance, on page 88, the helpful note that "stacking" means mixing oral steroids with injectable drugs.

In sum, this is what the report says:

-- Corrupt state-funded agencies helped Russian athletes to dope and evade detection. These include the Russian athletics federation, which goes by the initials ARAF; the WADA-accredited testing laboratory in Moscow; and RUSADA, the Russian anti-doping agency.

To read this story in its original form, please go to: http://www.3wiresports.com/2015/11/09/who-knew-what-when-and-what-is-to-be-done/

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