TOKYO -- For the first time in modern history, a peacetime Olympic Games has been called off. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he wants the event, when it is ultimately held, to be a symbol showing that "humanity overcame the coronavirus."
Tuesday's announcement that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, originally scheduled to begin in July, will be postponed until the summer of 2021 offered a sense of relief to many in Japan and around the world. Athletes who were training in uncertainty now have more time to prepare and catch up with qualifying events and other disruptions caused by the spread of COVID-19. And the potential risk of millions gathering in Tokyo this summer amid the pandemic has been abated.