In 1970 Frank Braun, president of the National Olympic Committee, said South Africans were the 'victim[s] of a vendetta' by a hostile world.2 Like most whites he regarded the sports boycott as part of a coordinated communist campaign. Among some Afrikaners the boycott even confirmed their deep sense of persecution: here was their God placing yet another obstacle in their path to righteousness. Yet there was no treachery or conspiracy. The boycott was a reaction to the gross effects of apartheid on sport and the Republic's unashamed attempts to impose its 'solutions' on the world. Sports people generally ignore the nexus between politics and sport: this was impossible with South Africa. It officially embraced a racially exclusive ideology that demeaned and denigrated black sports people and violated every accepted norm of human conduct in sport. By the 1950s no other regime subscribed to such an ideology; Stalin's Soviet Union, Mao's China and the plethora of military juntas in Latin America all accepted their 'indigenous' and 'ethnic' sports people as national representatives and heroes. South Africa ignored all advice, turned a deaf ear to all appeals, and arrogantly imposed its politics on to sport in ways that the world refused to countenance. In the end South Africa forced the world to intervene.