The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has praised President Barack Obama for his unequivocal support for the commemoration of the murder of eleven Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympic Games at the hands of Palestinian terrorists.
National Security Council spokesman, Tommy Vietor, said this week, “Yes the President absolutely supports the campaign for a minute of silence at the Olympics to honor the Israeli athletes killed in Munich.”
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, "We praise President Obama for expressing unequivocally the Administration's support for a commemoration involving a minute of silence at the upcoming London Olympics. It is disgraceful that such a straightforward, honorable and proportionate request by Israel, Jewish organizations and the victims' families has been refused by the IOC, to their eternal shame."
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has rejected calls by Israel, Canada, Australia, Germany and several Jewish organizations to hold a minute of silence at the opening ceremony of the London Games, which open July 27, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Munich slaughter.
IOC President Jacques Rogge has been asked to reconsider his organization's longstanding opposition to a special observance but on Saturday he rejected the last calls. “We feel that the opening ceremony is an atmosphere that is not fit to remember sucg a tragic incident,” he said at a press conference.
Rogged noted also that he has attended several ceremonies with the Israeli Olympic Committee and Israeli athletes during recent games.
“We feel that we are able to give a very strong homage and remembrance for the athletes within the sphere of the national Olympic committee,” he added.
On Sunday, a memorial event will be held in east London in the presence of the city’s mayor Boris Johnson and Efraim Zinger, head of Israel’s Olympic Committee.