Headlines out of Sochi on Sunday, Feb. 9 are not about terror threats. Russian president Vladimir Putin's promise of a safe and secure Winter Games competitive event appear to be sound, at present. For now, all eyes of spectators are on the competition as American athletes chase Norway on the way to the top of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics leader board. Canada and the Netherlands are close on their heels, as day two of competition heats up, however, threats of terror have been in short supply. Nevertheless, ABC News' Martha Raddatz told Good Morning America, Sunday, that even though things seem to be progressing smoothly, thus far, the most dire consequence of accepting the state of security at face value would be for them to “let down their guard.”
Raddatz explained that the current calm on the surface,
“Tells us absolutely nothing.”
She told GMA Sunday morning,
“We're so excited about the Olympics and those wonderful opening ceremonies. But, you have to remember the security … and that's what U.S. officials are keeping their eye on.
“They want to keep up-to-date on intelligence. They want to know the latest that they can hear. And, there are still those threats out there.”
Hosting for an absent George Stephanopoulos on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos, Sunday, Feb. 9, Raddatz described the Olympics as being “on edge.” Spectators included thousands of Americans there to cheer U.S. competitors on, in counterpoint to what some called inhospitable conditions on the ground in Sochi. Listed among the complaints were tens of thousands of police with dogs milling among the crowds of spectators and helicopters droning overhead, drowning out the opening ceremonies. Droves of purple-clad plainclothes policemen in ski caps oversaw strict security protocols, even forbidding the press access to American families when they attempted to interview them about the Olympic favorites they had come so far to support in the games.
Over the weekend, Russian law enforcement arrested anti-gay protesters in Moscow and Saint Petersburg, causing controversy and casting a shadow over opening ceremonies. Most talked about are the mishap with one of the five Olympic rings failing to open during the ceremonies, faulty door handles which came off in the openers hands, beer-colored water, a bee inside a packet of honey, and the bathroom that held U.S. bobsledder Johnny Quinn hostage when the door to his bedroom bath would not open to let him out after his shower.