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Wed Mar 05, 2008 2:19 am

 

Sorry Ken,

People are selectively sensitive. And people heed people selectively. I have edited that piece. It now reads:

Anthony Treacher wrote:
Larry Barnum addressed to me personally a subjective, uncritical, panegyric on Winston Thomas' character and conduct. I hinted where this may lead us. Larry Barnum has opened Pandora's Box.

You may have noticed that I have also been at the receiving end of gratuitous personal insults in poor tone on this forum. However, I have never complained about any poster to you. I would prefer first to take such matters off-line with the person concerned via a PM. That is my way - dare I say it "gentlemanly way" - of doing things.

Anyway, is that post now OK? Or is it Pandora's Box that worries people?



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Fri Mar 07, 2008 2:36 am

 

Larry Barnum wrote:
.......
I know a few members of the your team, but admittedly not many, yet they all seem to think Winston Thomas is a chap they respect. So although I understand that you, personally, have a grievance with him, I haven't heard anyone else complain about his treatment of them regarding BMAF or WMA matters. In my dealings with Winston, he strikes me as a gentleman, a thoughtful, even-tempered, reasonable, perceptive, kind-hearted, generous, gracious sportsmen. Even charming. ......

Larry Barnum, I really do not know Winston Thomas at all and I am also impressed by Winston Thomas' prowess as a masters athlete. I even respect and envy him. His 400m times were much, much better than mine. So I have no lack of respect for, and absolutely no personal "grievance" against, BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas - other than within the circumstances of his cover-up of my complaint against the British team manager and his unfair suspension of me.

An athletics chairman can be charming socially but very unpleasant when you file a complaint.

Larry, my lasting impression of Winston Thomas from my sole verbal contact with him in this matter is that he is the exact opposite of the gentleman you make him out to be. Thomas scorned me when I called him to correct the "inaccuracies" in a 18 September 2006 letter. He refused to correct or withdraw the letter. He was particularly unpleasant when I asked if could appeal against his letter - a letter that Winston had sent without even consulting the BMAF Committee. Ruling out any possibility of appeal to anyone, Winston Thomas added "but contact the WMA if you like and see how far that will get you." That was an unsubtle and thoroughly unpleasant reminder that BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas, in an epic and monumental conflict of interest in this matter, is also WMA General Secretary Winston Thomas.

To be fair, I may have called Winston Thomas at a bad moment. Or he was misinformed by his sources, which included the BMAF Team Manager but unfortunately not me because Winston did not contact me. And of course I could simply be making all this up.

Perhaps then it would be fairer to judge the character and veracity of BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas not on hearsay but on the actual content of his considered writings from his desk - for instance his "Apologise to the BMAF within twelve days or I suspend you" ultimatum and his actual Suspension letter.

But I really hesitate to go down that particular path. So I again request the members of the BMAF Committee to give me that written apology for the rules infringements, cheating and verbal abuse by the British Team Manager at the 2006 Linz World Masters Indoors. Then this matter - as far as I personally am concerned - will be closed. Is that OK?



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Sun Mar 09, 2008 3:25 am

 

Wayback in February 2, 2007 I received the following e-mail in support of me from a British athlete:

Quote:
Anthony

Your email address has been passed to me after I read your story on the Web by NNN. It made me realise that I am not alone.

My Name is nnn. I have had similar experiences with Dugan, Thomas and the BMAF I do not turn up at any event which I believe this rude arrogant Bully Dugan is playing a part and I do not wish for Mr Dugan to be called My Team Manager. He is an insult to the words….. etc, etc..

I have corresponded with this British athlete (and others). I sympathised with him because I have experienced the same BMAF treatment myself. But yesterday I received another e-mail from the same British athlete. See if you agree with him:

Quote:
Anthony

I am sorry if you cant see that you are becoming as bad as they are if you do not keep your protest aimed at the athletics channels that I have suggested over a year ago. First Claim club, county, country, UKa, IAAF and similar Masters equivalent. Every time you write any of these organisations send a copy to all the others. Perhaps you can tabulate the incident again and state your complaint and the result you would like and send it to all of them pluss the athletes who were present and ask for their support in burying the matter with an honest investigation, not the www or the press.

You are breaking more rules than they have and giving them more reasons and evidence to attack you with. That is what I mean when I say that they are enjoying what you are doing. They couldn't give a damn about your performances. You are going to loose lots of support if you do not follow procedures and rules that you compete under.

Personnally I cannot understand how you can continue to support them and keep complaining. The public forum is the wrong place for this problem.

All the best
nnn"


I responded today as follows (sorry for the errors; the e-mail was not meant for this forum):

Quote:
You not seem to get it. But if anyone asks you, tell them the following:

I live in Sweden. My first claim club is Swedish. My county is Stockholm County. Country Sweden. What have they got to do with this?

I have pursued and exhausted ALL channels - particularly civilised offline channels - the "olive branch" - from offering Doogan to settle the matter with a handshake at the very start, to contacting BMAF President Paul Dickenson to settle offline. No dice. Ignored and insulted.

I have done what you said. I have extensively contacted all the ATHLETICS channels you mentioned and a few more you do not know of. I have tried to follow the procedures and rules that I compete under (particularly the WMA rules at Linz). But there are no grievance procedures rules for a British masters athlete in the BMAF constitution. You know that.

The SCVAC is not my first claim club and the SCVAC Chairman (although he was in the relay team and should be a witness for me) will not entertain the matter, the BMAF, as you well know, has no disciplinary procedures and does not reply to me, the UKA refers to the non-existing BMAF disciplinary procedures, Sport England and Sport UK say it is a matter for UKA. The WMA says it cannot enter into what is formally an internal BMAF matter and must automatically ratify a BMAF decision. The IAAF says it has no jurisdiction over masters athletics.

And for every move I make I´receive a gratuitous insult. Please remember that I am 68 year old masters athlete. People simply do not care.

So what remains? The courts? That would be ridiculous.

I contacted Ken Stone's Masterstrack.com as a last resort, long after the Linz events. The public forum is the right place for this, simply because it is the only place. Otherwise the matter is ignored - swept under the carpet. That is the truth. Or?

And which rules am I breaking? How can they attack me? Winston has already suspended me without hearing or appeal. Is he going to go down that path again after my exposure of him. I think not.

I am not seeking the support of the British masters athletes because I do not respect them. And what have my performances got to do with it? I am an athlete and perform and break records solely to impress myself, and of course not to support my case.

Sure nnn, it is hard work. But I am much getting further than you did.

Anthony

I have also received an indignant e-mail from another British athlete who acknowledges that he asked Ken to ban me from this Forum.

So I put it to you. Is it wrong for me to state the case against BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas on this Forum?



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Mon Mar 10, 2008 7:35 pm

 
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Master Masters Athlete
User avatar
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 6:03 am
Posts: 113
Location: In the sticks, Western PA

Rock on, Tony. But us damn Yanks ain't gonna give a rat's hind parts usless in directly effects us individually - thus the lukewarm support. I agree with you in principle. What can be done? How can the offender(s) be reprimanded or punished? Is there a more fruitful solution besides calling these guys emmer effers (not that they aren't)?



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Mon Mar 10, 2008 9:20 pm

 
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Master Masters Athlete
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 8:03 pm
Posts: 54

In the olden days, when this topic first showed up on the forum, there was plenty of support from many Yanks for Mr Treacher.

I'm sure many of those Yanks wish Mr Treacher only the best and hope that he can focus on setting more records and enjoying the sport.

There comes a point when nothing more can be said.



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Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:54 pm

Offline
Senior Masters Athlete
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:00 am
Posts: 21
Location: Louisiana

I don't post much, but I've been inspired to now. I think this whole subject needs to meet with the gallows. :arrow:

I, too, sympathized with Mr. Treacher early on, but bejesus....he's hanging himself with his long wind. Time to put the focus back on the sport and away from self-righteous rants. :roll:

Sorry, Mr. Treacher, sometimes you just gotta suck it up and move on. :!:

Cheers!



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Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:13 am

 

Larry Barnum wrote March 1: "and hearing only your side of the story...."
Larry, I resent the implication that my story is incorrect or one-sided in any way. It is solely thanks to Ken Stone's blog that you hear any side of this story at all. Furthermore I have tried to be fair to the BMAF. I even provided some of the "other side of the story" - Winston Thomas' allegations against me. So don't anyone come on this forum again with the implicit criticism that you only hear my side of the story. If you want the other side of the story contact BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas and his BMAF Committee. You will not get the facts. But clearly you can get enough subjective gossip to confirm your own predjudices.

Larry: "I would imagine he had some good reasons for his decision."
Yes Larry, he had good reasons. But those reasons were not founded in any misconduct by me that warrented suspension according to UKA Laws for Competition. Unfortunately your British sources failed to inform you that the most important factor in this whole affair is that BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas is totally dependent on his Team Manager. So when British Team Manager Maurice Doogan refused to apologise for his conduct at Linz, his Chairman Winston Thomas chose to defend Doogan and criticize me instead. Unfortunately that necessitated Winston Thomas making things up:

Pandora's Box 1
Quote:
"I did contact you several times during the summer although I was heavily committed as EVAA Technical Manager in Poznan and the BMAF track and field championships and AGM."

Winston Thomas did not contact me once during the summer.



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Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:38 am

 

Pandora's Box 2
Quote:
"Further to my letter of the 11th September and my subsequent telephone conversation with you….. "

Winston Thomas deliberately gives the impression that he was in communication with me and took initiatives to contact me. Not so. His 11th September letter (his "ruling") was then his first and only contact with me since I lodged the complaint against his Team Manager in March. His letter was prompted by a 6th September reminder from me to BMAF Secretary Bridget Cushen.

Winston Thomas' "my subsequent telephone conversation with you" was a telephone call from me to him at my initiative, questioning the facts in his letter/ruling. So even Winston Thomas' most innocuous-looking sentences in the suspension documents are pure spin. And the rest is much worse than that......



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Sun Apr 27, 2008 11:36 pm

 

Pandora's Box 3
Quote:
"..your dispute with the BMAF Team Manager in Linz was raised at our meeting in November."

How can my Chairman - who I approached for an impartial and fair investigation - scornfully dismiss a complaint concerning his Team Manager's rules infringements, incitement to cheating and verbal abuse as "your dispute"?

How can my Chairman have raised my complaint at a BMAF Committee Meeting as early as November 2006 - without informing me, without hearing me and without ever notifying me of the Committee's findings?



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Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:06 am

 

Coincidentally my Sunday Times this week had a header "The dictators are back … and we don't care"



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Mon May 05, 2008 4:57 am

 

Pandora's Box 4
Quote:
"The Team Manager, Maurice Doogan, confirmed that there was a disagreement on the M65 relay team selection, arising from which you were argumentative and very persistent."

Another seemingly innocuous sentence that is also one hundred percent Winston Thomas' spin. As you know, relay team "selection" takes place long before the relay team enters the Call Room. I was of course completely uninterested in the selection of the relay team. The disagreement took place afterwards - on the track. It is therefore completely impossible that the disagreement concerned M65 relay team "selection." Correct?

The formal GBR M65 relay team - consisting of the three runners originally selected by the British Team Manager and the formal substitute (himself a member of the BMAF Committee and also a British team leader) - had passed the Call Room, were on the track and were irrevocably destined to run as specified. The British Team Manager then invaded the track with the runner who was disqualified for being late and who was not approved by the Call Room. The Team Manager improperly "ordered" us to replace the legitimate runner with his illegal substitute - conduct that would inevitably have disqualified the GBR M65 4x200m relay team. So of course I was argumentative and very persistent - good qualities incidentally - in preventing that.

The British Team Manager shortly afterwards then invaded the track a second time to pick a quarrel with me. Obviously, the British Team Manager initiated the disagreement. He was totally out of line. These are the facts and they will be verified by any member of the GBR M65 relay team.

How then could Winston Thomas so blatantly ignore the witnesses, falsify the facts and spin this into a matter of team "selection"? Well, relay team selection is a safe card. Winston must be telling the truth because he is BMAF Chairman and writing an official document about suspension, right? And of course athletes are known to argue about relay team selection, aren't they? (Incidentally after Winston Thomas' story some people seriously believed that I had improperly tried to argue myself a place in the relay team!) And relay team selection is ultimately the responsibility of the team manager. So reading Winston Thomas' story, you would recognise the situation and intuitively put me in the wrong. Simultaneously Winston Thomas could trivialise and deflect a serious complaint against his British Team Manager. That is exactly what Winston intended. It was simple and effective. It was also completely false and dishonest.

BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas may well have been "misled" by his British Team Manager from the start. But Winston did then embellish the story all by himself. He has no excuse. The rot starts at the top. We owe it to ourselves not to accept this behaviour from our officers - our role models. Otherwise we will inevitably become as devious and unpleasant as they are.



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Thu May 15, 2008 7:54 am

 

Pandora's Box 5
Quote:
"Maurice responded abruptly and had called you a name, which was regrettable."

The quotes are from BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas' "Apologise in 12 days or I suspend you" ultimatum of January 2007. I replied "Nuts" to the ultimatum because the lies were just too much to handle. But that left the lies unanswered. Some authority-awed Lilliputian nerds still obviously believe Winston Thomas' version. Thank you for this opportunity to put the record straight.

"abruptly……" Winston Thomas deliberately gives the impression that I was argumentative and so Maurice was forced to respond abruptly. Not at all. There was a fairly reasoned discussion during the British Team Manager's first incursion onto the track. Unfortunately it closed with British Team Manager Maurice Doogan's invitation to cheat: "You will do better with John in the team." "Nobody will notice." "Take a chance on nobody appealing." "I will back you up." That was the last straw for me.

The name calling started with the British Team Manager's second incursion onto the track solely to berate me. Maurice Doogan aggressively started off with "You disobeyed my direct order. I am your team manager." I responded with "And you are a very bad team manager. Get off the track." He then said, "You are an Asshole. Your will never again run for a British relay team." The spin that Winston Thomas gives to the whole business is thus completely wrong - either he is dishonest, or he was totally misinformed.

"a name"?… and some. The British Team Manager called his loyal British athlete - about to run a relay for Queen and Country - an "Asshole."

British Team Manager Maurice Doogan is renowned for his disrespectful and abusive rants to his British athletes in his e-mails and in the British masters athletics magazine Masters Athletics. I never quite got used to it and it may have been in the back of my mind at Linz. Other British masters athletes have told me they are heartily sick of Maurice Doogan's diatribes.

The prospect of running a relay race and being disqualified at the end of it was bad enough. The prospect of being required to explain and having to rely on my chum Maurice Doogan - that he would actually have owned up and supported me - was completely impossible. And the way this affair has subsequently developed, my lack of confidence in Doogan's solidarity and honesty was justified - he cannot have told his Chairman the truth. Anyway… on the whole a rather eventful prelude to running a relay race for any athlete. Or what do you think, Cousins?

Incidentally, this had a sequel at the Clermont-Ferrand World Championships. I had intended to run the M65 4x200m relay. But my Swedish wife - a disgusted witness to the British Team Manager's conduct at Linz - hit the roof: "What? You must be crazy. You can't seriously be thinking of running for those terrible people again!" That brought me to my senses so I did not volunteer for the GBR M65 4x200m relay team at Clermont-Ferrand. My wife was right. And unless I get a written apology for Maurice Doogan's cheating and verbal abuse at Linz I will not offer my modest services to any GBR relay team in the future either. So GBR relay team-mates - either put up, or shut up and don't bother to ask me to run for you again.

It is not the "Asshole" insult that rankles most. It is being involved with this BMAF underworld of lying and dishonesty, with the implicit assumption that I must shut up "or else …." "Or else" first was the threat of suspension. Subsequently it has been ridicule and abuse for continuing to protest. The rot starts at the top. Small men - from national athletics officers down to you - follow after their role models. The psychology of the weakness and complicity of small men, coupled with the modern phenomenon of Internet abuse from a safe distance, is fascinating.

"regrettable"?…. so all the British Team Manager did was to call me a name? And my entire complaint against the British Team Manager can be hushed up and dismissed 10 months later with a "regrettable"?

The BMAF still has not given me their promised apology for British Team Manager Maurice Doogan's rules infringements, cheating and verbal abuse at WMA Linz.

WMA still has not censured British Team Manager Maurice Doogan for his conduct. The fact that BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas is also WMA Secretary is of course irrelevant in this connection.

UK Athletics (UKA), the real national governing body for athletics in the UK - and thus ultimately responsible - still has not censured Maurice Doogan or Winston Thomas. Time perhaps to approach UKA CEO Mr. Niels de Vos?

Anthony Treacher
British M65 Athlete and BMAF-designated Asshole (no BMAF apology, so it is still official)



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Wed May 21, 2008 4:16 am

 

Pandora's Box 6
Quote:
"As the start of all the relays were brought forward in order that the arena be prepared for the Closing Ceremony. Maurice had to ensure that all 13 British age group teams were available and ready to run. You have failed to grasp, or even consider, the hassle and amount of work involved. The BMAF had a team of 277 competitors, managed by Maurice and two Assistants, both of whom competed."

What utter nonsense the BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas writes!

Yes, it's a miracle that our busy British Team Manager Maurice Doogan ever found time to make his second - completely brainless - incursion onto the track to scream at his athlete.

And has not Winston Thomas himself utterly "failed to grasp, or even consider" how it felt for a mature man to stand there helpless, half-naked on the track in his British singlet and shorts about to run a relay race for GBR and be subjected to verbal abuse from his own British Team Manager?



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Fri Jun 06, 2008 6:06 am

 

Pandora's Box 7
Quote:
"Following your dispute with Maurice, you took it upon yourself to write to the Secretary of each of the BMAF affiliated clubs; to the Editor of a publication and some other competitors instead of lodging a complaint to the BMAF direct and waiting our investigation."

"Following your dispute with Maurice" - "your dispute"? Is the sneering tone really necessary? Winston Thomas is my BMAF Chairman. As a BMAF member, I expected him to be impartial in this matter? Why cannot my Chairman respect the justified complaint of a paid-up member of a BMAF club?

"BMAF direct" - Winston deliberately omits to mention that I did indeed lodge my initial complaint to the BMAF direct - to BMAF President Paul Dickenson on March 22 2006, immediately after the Linz incident. Paul Dickenson delegated the matter to Winston. So Winston was aware of the Doogan matter for eight months and did nothing about it.

"BMAF affiliated clubs" - when I lodged the June complaint to the BMAF, I certainly did copy it to the secretaries of the BMAF clubs. That is because BMAF President Paul Dickenson had not responded to my initial approach as he had promised and I understandably feared a BMAF cover-up.

"waiting our investigation" - Winston Thomas has an unfortunate tendency to belittle people. Here he wishes to give the overall impression that I am an impossible, impatient person. But I had already patiently waited two months for BMAF President Paul Dickenson to respond. I had waited three months after my June complaint - again in vain. By the time Winston wrote this suspension ultimatum, I had again waited another three months. That was all very trying. And even then, Winston only contacted me with the suspension ultimatum to shut me up because I had reminded him of his 15 September 2006 e-mail:

Quote:
"Anthony
Thank you for the communication.
I agree I "had" already determined the facts on what I had been told.

Having spoken with you and Arthur I have a different perspective and I will
be talking to "others" before writing you an apology, but please be aware
that it may be after our BMAF meeting in 5th November, as we are just not
able to get our executive together for a meeting at the present.

It is not necessary to write me as I had said as Arthur has given me a
great deal more than I had before, and corroborates some of the points that
you made.

So from BMAF position this has to be dealt with.

Regards

Winston Thomas"

But despite the above e-mail the BMAF never "dealt with" the matter. I waited again in vain. Under the circumstances when I have waited and waited, how can Winston Thomas ever refer to me "not waiting our investigation"?

Winston Thomas did not contact me at all. No apology. No investigation. Winson deliberately snubbed me. That is small and vindictive. And the petty viciousness has continued.

The character of Winston Thomas may impress Larry Barnum. But sorry. In my experience, Winston Thomas is not honest, truthful or fair and that is for starters. I am a reasonable man. But on my evidence alone Winston Thomas is not worthy of the positions of Chairman of BMAF and Secretary of WMA.



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Sun Jun 15, 2008 2:19 am

 

Pandora's Box 8
Quote:
"You also approached the Chairman of World Masters Athletics’ Disciplinary Committee; your complaint was rejected."

Sorry, I was never allowed to make an official complaint to WMA. As with my complaint to BMAF, I was stopped at every turn. So my complaint was not rejected. But if WMA Secretary Winston Thomas insists it was, I encourage any WMA officer to provide any minutes or documentation on my case. I have seen nothing. In particular I would like to see the decision to reject my complaint about BMAF Team Manager Maurice Doogan's rules infringements and verbal abuse on the track at the WMA World Championships at Linz - and the WMA's objective grounds for so doing. OK?

In good faith I had sought the help and advice of WMA Law and Legislation Committee Chairman Friedel Schunk. But Schunk's long-winded, pseudo-legal mumbo jumbo, philosophical asides and evasions were eventually insufferable. We fell out. The situation became completely impossible when Schunk would not allow me to call him by telephone to clear up misunderstandings and repair our relationship.

Friedel Schunk got annoyed at my persistence. Ignoring conflict of interest niceties, he consulted his WMA colleague the WMA Secretary (BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas) about my complaint concerning the BMAF Team Manager, and apparently about my personality. The latter was easy - the BMAF Team Manager had already informed Winston Thomas that I was an Asshole and Friedel Schunk got the message. Overbridging personal antipathies and communication problems, WMA officers Friedel Schunk and Winston Thomas found convenient common ground in ignoring the objective facts of my complaint and ridiculing me instead. I now understand that comes naturally to certain athletics officer personality types and it later became the official norm in dealing with me.

Evidently a small man and a bully, Schunk then amused himself by deliberately insulting me with the following:
Quote:
"Also accept the fact, that not everybody may be perfect, or as perfect as you think you are."

Schunk finally washed his hands of my complaint and me in a similarly delightful way:
Quote:
"If you wish to file an official complaint to WMA, which you have not done so far, please direct it to our organisation, by eMail or postal letter, and it will land at our Secretary's for further disposition. Perhaps that would satisfy you more."

Just read that again. Apart from the unwarrented nastiness, it is the WMA Laws and Legislation Committee Chairman implicitly confirming that the WMA Secretary (BMAF Chairman Winston Thomas) held preconceived notions about me and my complaint against his BMAF Team Manager that made it meaningless for me to file an official complaint to WMA.

Despite that, I then informed Friedel Schunk that I wished to file an official complaint to WMA. I formally requested Friedel Schunk to furnish me with the name of an impartial WMA officer (not Winston Thomas because of the obvious conflict of interest) to whom I could file that official complaint to WMA. Friedel Schunk did not deign to respond.

Little wonder I hate our lords and masters. But Cousins - the adrenaline sure is good for the 400m.



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