Glowacz: “Dodging means accepting”
Mountaineers and climbers travel. Frequently and as self-evident. Finally mountains do not come to them. This is precisely why it should be self-evident that people involved in mountain sports should raise their voices when the freedom of travel is restricted or even abolished – as now by US President Donald Trump for people from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen. So far, the great outcry of the climbing scene has stayed away. Is it perhaps because in these countries – with the exception of Iran – the number of mountaineers and climbers is limited? Or because those countries are (still) not among the favorite destinations of the mountain friends? After all, German top climber Stefan Glowacz didn’t mince his words.
For freedom, tolerance and respect
“With the restriction of freedom of travel for certain nationalities, I feel indirectly affected because friends and acquaintances are directly affected,” the 51-year-old writes on Facebook. “Like the Iranian climber Nasim Eshqi, whom I personally know and appreciate.” The 36-year-old woman is one of the best rock climbers in her country.
Climbers, says Stefan Glowacz, define their sport above all by freedom: “No rules, no referees. We appreciate and live the freedom to be able to set off at any time (and almost everywhere). Freedom is the decisive part why climbing is so fascinating for many of us.” Democratic values are in danger, says Glowacz: “Have the incidents and wars of the past not shown us that it only works by cooperation? With tolerance and respect, such as we climbers experience again and again – no matter what country we are traveling to?” Glowacz warns against burying our heads in the sand in the face of Trump’s policy: “Dodging or staying silent means accepting. We should want to change something.”
The Iranian sports climber Farnaz Esmaeilzadeh does not know what to do after Trump’s entry ban. “I am just an athlete and I did not choose where to born,” the 28-year-old writes on Facebook. “Even though I love my culture and country, I’m just trying for progress, better living and working on my goals as many other successful people do.” Trump’s decision is “racist and inhuman”, says Farnaz. “It’s a shame! If all people in the world had the same conditions, we could see who is really talented.”
Date1. February 2017 | 16:05