The Human Cost of Qatar's World Cup
Stephen Lendman 
Date: 11-20-2022
Subject: Tyranny

The Human Cost of Qatar's World Cup

by Stephen Lendman

What US/Western MSM, Doha-based Al Jazeera and other Qatari media ignore is most important to explain about this year's World Cup matches in Qatar.

A decade ago, I discussed appalling conditions for thousands of imported migrant workers.

They've been exploited and abused to build the Al Bayt Stadium, other World Cup facilities and infrastructure.

On the eve of the opening ceremony and beginning of matches on the same day, the London Guardian explained the following:

"Nepal-based Guardian journalist, Pete Pattisson, made the first of many trips to Kathmandu's airport in Nepal to count coffins."

He "traced bodies of dozens of migrant workers repatriated from Qatar to their families…try(ing) to establish why they never made it home alive." 

For 10 years, he reported on the the Qatari regime's "brutal conditions faced by hundreds of thousands of migrant workers."

They were paid sub-poverty wages to build "Qatar's state-of-the-art stadiums, (its) roads, hotels and infrastructure needed to host the major sporting event."

A decade ago before the casualty count mounted exponentially, I explained that imported Nepalese workers — where most migrant workers were recruited — were dying at the rate of around one a day — from injuries and abuse.

And this damning evidence at the time, continuing through completion of construction:

Forced labor was virtual modern-day slavery.

Many migrant workers had their meager pay withheld.

Worker passports were confiscated, reducing their status to illegal aliens with no rights.

During working hours in high temperatures, access to free drinking was denied.

FIFA was and remains complicit with Qatari exploitation and brutality.

Migrant workers were housed in cramped, filthy conditions.

They were ill-fed, over-worked and underpaid. 

Anti-Slavery International director, Aidan McQuade, earlier said the following:

"(E)vidence uncovered (was and remains) clear proof of systematic forced labor in Qatar."

Appalling "working conditions (caused an) astonishing number of deaths" and injuries. 

Migrant workers were mistreated as "objects," forcibly held in "bondage."

On Saturday, the Guardian stressed what it called "Qatar's World Cup Slaves."

Last year, the Guardian reported that thousands of migrant workers had perished.

On Sunday before the opening ceremony and beginning of matches on the same day, Qatar's state-owned and controlled Al Jazeera devoted entire newscasts to shamelessly promoting the World Cup.

For days in the run-up to its start, its programming mainly featured heavy promotion — with no mention of the human toll in preparation for what began on Sunday.

I'm not a World Cup fan. 

If otherwise, I'd tune out and refuse to watch what took thousands of lives and caused countless numbers of injuries for matches to be played for spectators and a world television audience.

Qatari regime contempt for human rights should encourage others to tune out what took slave labor and massive loss of life for 2022 World Cup matches to be played.

Last week, The Guardian headlined:

"Stadiums of shame: numbers World Cup host Qatar" wants hidden from public view, saying:

The Qatari regime spent "$200 billion" in preparation for 2022 World Cup matches.

In 2018, Russia spent around $11 billion and did a remarkable organizing job — what took place at 12 stadiums in 11 cities, protecting worker rights in preparation for matches.

The Qatari regime defied reality by falsely claiming about 3 dozen deaths in preparation for World Cup 2022 — and saying they perished from "natural causes (sic)."

The Guardian reported 6,500 deaths from 2010 through 2021.

According to the Business & Human Rights Resource Center:

"(M)any deaths among previously fit and healthy young men on such a scale would be astonishing in any other context."

An estimated 100,000 migrant workers were brutally exploited, many forced to work from 14 - 18 hours daily.

Some paid recruitment fees to be hired and ended up deeply in debt.

In a region run by despotic regimes, Qatar is considered less abusive than others.

Brutally exploited and abused migrant workers as virtual slaves know otherwise.