(NYP) — Those calling for a moment of silence at next week’s Olympics to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the 1972 Munich terrorist massacre of Israeli athlete-hostages have just picked up key support.
First, NBC’s lead Olympics anchor, Bob Costas, said he’ll publicly call out the International Olympics Committee for refusing the request.
And, Costas added, if the IOC fails to allow a moment of silence during next Friday’s opening ceremonies, he’ll hold one instead on NBC’s telecast as the Israeli team enters the arena.
“I intend to note that the IOC denied the request,” he said. “Many people find that denial more than puzzling, but insensitive, [so] here’s a minute of silence right now.”
Good for him.
Then, in the wake of Costas’ announcement, the White House joined in, saying, “We absolutely support the campaign.”
Eleven athletes and coaches were killed in a botched German attempt to rescue them from Palestinian terrorists.
Ankie Rekhess-Spitzer, widow of the slain fencing coach, has long sought an official commemoration of the tragedy.
She says the IOC called such a gesture “political” and “told us the Arab delegations will get up and leave. To which I said, ‘It’s OK; if they don’t understand what the Olympics are all about, let them leave.’”