Three decades after the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre, this year’s Israeli athletic delegation joined Israeli diplomats and other Jews in commemorating that terrible loss this morning here in Beijing in an event sponsored by the Israeli embassy and the Israel Olympic Committee.
According to Haaretz, hundreds came to the event, including representatives of Israel’s athletic delegations, and Israel’s science, culture and sport minister, Raleb Majadele, who spoke of his friends among the athletes murdered in Germany.
What is troubling to learn is that the International Olympic Committee has refused to hold any official commemoration of the horrific event in the past 36 years.
JTA quotes the secretary-general of the Israeli Olympic Committee, Ephraim Zinger, who gave this answer as to why the IOC has steadfastly refused to acknowledge or commemorate the murders despite Israel’s raising the issue at every meeting with the IOC.
“Probably they are concerned about the reaction of those who will disagree with a memorial like this,” Zinger said. “There are 205 NOCs [national Olympic committees] participating in the Olympics, and there are more than a few dozen that will strongly disagree with this kind of event.”