“I think we all know as we head to Sochi that we are in for an interesting ride,” said Matt Lauer. “There are a lot of groups that would like to take advantage of the Olympics to make a point, whether it is a positive point or a negative point, so we go there with our eyes wide open,” he added.
Although every Olympics faces terrorism threats, Capital reports on the unique circumstances surrounding Sochi, and NBC’s preparation for it.
For starters, one of the largest terrorist groups operating in Russia, the Caucasus Emirate, has promised to attack the games. While previous Olympics were widely believed to be targets, there hasn’t been a declaration of attack as there is with Sochi. Last month, two suicide bombers struck in Volgograd, Russia, killing 30 people. Those attacks heightened fears of possible attacks in Sochi, just over 600 miles away.
NBC News senior V.P. Alex Wallace tells Capital that they already have foreign correspondent Jim Maceda in Sochi, covering the aftermath of the Volgograd bombings. In addition, chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel is in the region “to kind of become steeped in all the issues of the Caucasus,” Bell says. “These games are taking place in something close to a volatile region,” he added.
The opening ceremony for the Sochi games is February 7.