A campaign by the widows of two Israeli victims of the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre have had their petition for a memorial at the 2012 Olympic games rejected by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Ankie Spitzer, widow of murdered Israeli wrestler Andre Spitzer, and Ilana Romano, widow of murdered weightlifter Joseph Romano, issued an appeal for a minute of silence at this year’s games, in memory of the violence which marred the Games 40 years ago.
Spitzer told Reuters that the IOC refusal is due to concern that Arab countries would publicly protest the memorial to the murder victims by walking out. “They say we bring politics into the Olympics, which is not true, because I didn’t ask them to say that there were 11 Israelis,” Spitzer said. “They tell us that the Arab delegations will get up and leave, to which I said: ‘It’s okay, if they don’t understand what the Olympics are all about, let them leave.’”
On September 5, 1972, Palestinian Black September terrorists stormed the Olympic Village in Munich, and killed 11 Israeli weightlifters, wrestlers, and coaches – two during the surprise attack on the Israeli dormitory, and 9 more in a failed hostage rescue attempt.