2026 Commonwealth Games in Victoria Cancelled

This announcement was as sudden as it was striking as it gave concrete form to the plummeting reputation of the Games – not to mention the Commonwealth itself – with no guarantee that they will ever held again. According to the Victorian Premier, they would have been too expensive to stage for poor return. Like everything else, this triggered a range of views including that the Commonwealth should be cancelled (this should be an outcome of the Australian Republic that we excuse ourselves and make as hasty exit from such a tainted association) but, best of all, we liked Sky TV host and former PM chief of staff Peta Credlin AM’s conclusion. Under the banner “Cruel Decision to Ditch Games Revokes Queen’s Memory”, she stated, “Her Majesty’s legacy has been thoroughly trashed by this appalling, selfish decision. King Charles will be devastated by this treasonous behaviour”. Treasonous? Pretty amusing, totally OTT. WfaAR is sure Charles thinks avoiding another trip to Australia is a highly desirable outcome. Quite a few commentators linked our former Head of State’s death with the rapid decline in the reputation of the Commowealth but we have to reflect on how long the fact of Queen Elizabeth herself personally held the whole show in place – was it really because no Commonwealth leader/s had the bravery to advise their monarch how it all looked in the 21st century and seek abolition or leave – not that that would have been news to the Queen herself who was a canny observer of realpolitik but hung on as long as she could to leave Charles in the best possible position at the start of his reign. The real question for today is why this created such a to-do in the MSM and why we didn’t all just yawn and move on. Britain uses “the Commonwealth”, ie of the conquered and colonised, as an important plank in its own identity as well as a vehicle for much soft diplomacy in its own interests. The Commonwealth Games were formerly known as the (British) Empire Games. There’s some commentary below about the link between the cancellation of Victoria’s hosting, the Commonwealth and the Republic [“Does Victoria’s cancellation sound a death knell for the Commonwealth Games” by Mary Gearin, ABC online, 18 July 2023]

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