Imagine you are taken from your home to a concentration camp; survive several deportations; take up arms against the Nazis and survive the uprising; leave behind the places you know and build a new life in the land of your ancestors; rise to the top of Israel's athletes list; you're selected to represent Israel at the Olympic games – and then your life is cut short by political assassins...That is what happened to Yakov Springer (Z”L).
The 11 victims are not a statistic: they represent 11 lives and 11 stories; they left behind families, friends and truncated hopes. All because they were Jews. And it happened in Munich, one of the cradles of Nazism. I remember participating as a teenager in Buenos Aires of the demonstrations in support of the Munich 11 and their families – and yet to this day the IOC has not seen fit to memorialize them.
After the massacre, Israel sent special operatives to track down and kill the perpetrators of the attack. They killed all but two of them. Abu Daoud, the mastermind of the attack and head of “Black September”, would die in 2010 of natural causes. Jamal Al-Gashey is still on the run, being uncertain whether he's hiding in northern Africa or in Syria.
To the last of his days, Abu Daoud was not only unrepentant but even proud of the massacre. In 1996 he was given free passage by Israel to attend a meeting of the PLO in the Gaza Strip.
The funding for the operation, as revealed by Abu Daoud to Der Spiegel in 2006, came from Mahmoud Abbas aka Abu Mazen, current President of the Palestinian Authority.
Abu Mazen's Doctoral thesis at the University of St Petersburg was a paper questioning the historical reality of the Holocaust. Who was then Yakov Springer?
When Abbas was appointed as the first Palestinian to fill the position of Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, he was dismissed by Arafat at gunpoint for opposing some of his (Arafat's) views. He was also involved in the organization of the “Karina A” operation to smuggle weapons into the Palestinian territories. So much for respecting the agreements you sign.
Imagine you were one of the Israelis at Oslo in 1993 when the Declaration of Principles was being negotiated. One of the chief negotiators for the Palestinian side was Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas). If you knew then what we know today about his involvement in the Munich massacre...would you have trusted him? Would you have signed the deal?