AJC Praises German Parliamentarians’ Call for a Moment of Silence at London Olympics
AJC applauds the efforts of several German parliamentarians who have called for a minute of silence at the July 27th opening ceremony of the Olympic Games.
At the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, 11 members of the Israeli team were murdered by Palestinian terrorists. Despite pleas by the families of the victims and others, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has repeatedly refused to acknowledge this tragedy in an opening ceremony.
„Forty years after the tragic events that cost the lives of eleven Israelis and a German policeman, [a minute of silence] would be a sign that the Olympic Games strengthen the spirit of peace and reconciliation amongst nations. The entire Olympic movement should unite in this spirit in a minute of silence,” said Philipp Mißfelder, member of the Christian Democratic Union and Foreign Affairs Committee spokesperson.
Volker Beck and Jerzy Montag, both members of the Green Party, wrote jointly: "Despite the hopes for peaceful and joyful games, the ruthless attacks at the Olympic Games in Munich will always be remembered as one of the most devastating events in sport history. No amends can be made, yet the memory of these violations of Olympic values should be kept alive and remembered through commemorative events and other initiatives.” Beck and Montag, chairman of the German-Israeli Parliamentary Group, further urged an investigation of the preparation, execution and fallout from the attack on the Israel athletic team in 1972, as well as financial support to share the results of this inquiry with the German public.
AJC welcomes the growing German support for a moment of silence, including statements recently released by the CDU/CSU parliamentary group as well as the Green Party. Importantly, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle expressed his support in a statement last month.
“We hope others throughout Europe will follow the lead of the German government and German parliamentarians in appealing for a moment of silence to commemorate the slain Israeli athletes and coaches,” said Deidre Berger, director of AJC Berlin