Since 2012 is the 40th anniversary of the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre, Israel thought it had leverage in lobbying for a moment of silence, but as in previous years, the The International Olympic Committee rejected that request. Activists and members of the victims' families have lobbied for the recognition in the past, but per The New York Times' Mary Pilon, this was a rare year when the Israeli government advocated on their behalf as well. It still didn't work.
Since a group of Palestinian terrorists kidnapped and killed 11 Israeli athletes in a failed bid to force Israel to release Palestinian prisoners during the Summer Olympics in Munich in 1972, "Israel has regularly requested a moment of silence for the Olympics every four years, and the IOC has consistently turned down that proposal," the American Jewish Committee wrote in a dejected-sounding press release. It rankles Israel and the AJC that the IOC allowed American athletes to enter the stadium with a flag from the World Trade Center in 2002 but, as they see it, still hasn't done enough to officially commemorate the 1972 attack.
The IOC maintains that it has. In 2002, The Los Angeles Times Alan Abrahamson wrote, "It has been the contention of IOC leaders that they have repeatedly honored those killed. They point to a memorial service the day after the Sept. 5, 1972, attack and, more recently, comments during the closing ceremony of the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games as well as remarks by IOC President Jacques Rogge's this week during an all-delegates session in Salt Lake City." The IOC has said it would be open to future official tributes, but so far it hasn't actually allowed them.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.