On March 1, 1973, as a diplomatic reception ended at the Saudi embassy in Khartoum, eight masked gunmen of the Palestinian terrorists group Black September stormed into the embassy and captured five diplomats, including two Americans.
The terrorists released their demands, which included: the freeing of many Palestinians from Jordan, including Abu Daoud, a leader of Black September; the freeing of Sirhan Sirhan, Robert Kennedy’s killer, from jail in California; and the freeing of Palestinian women in prison in Israel.
President Nixon announced that he would not negotiate with the terrorists for the release of diplomats. So the terrorists executed three of the diplomats, including the two Americans, George Curtis Moore and Cleo Allen Noel, Jr.
The execution orders came from none other than, the Father of Modern Terrorism, Yasser Arafat. Nixon knew this. Kissinger knew this. Covert operatives knew this. And many years later, in 1986 the Senate Judiciary Committee published The Availability of Civil and Criminal Actions Against Yasser Arafat’s Palestine Liberation Organization. Along with confirming that the execution orders of the American diplomats in Khartoum came from Arafat, the report also listed forty-two incidents between 1968 and 1985 in which American citizens suffered attacks and/or death at Arafat and the PLO hands.
So why am I bringing up an event that happened in March of 1973? Because today a report was made public by Ilana Romano and Ankie Spitzer, widows of two of the Olympic Israeli athletes who were murdered at the 1972 Munich Games. The widows made public, via The New York Times, that the Israeli athletes and coaches were beaten and at least one castrated during the 20 hours that they were held hostage by the terrorist group Black September.
Yes, the same Black September terrorist group who killed the American diplomats. And yes, Arafat was directly involved again. It was the beginning of his long, infamous career of terrorism that ironically led to his legitimization as a statesman worthy of world leaders’ time, adoration, and support.
The widows are reportedly coming forward with the information they’ve known since 1992 in order to gain public and official acknowledgement for their murdered husbands and all the members of the team.
I say this with all due respect, but honestly, most of the world does not give a damn about what happened to these men in 1972. Yes, some will shake their heads in disgust and “tsk, tsk” until they read the next headline news. Some will even be momentarily horrified. Momentarily. But most will simply not care. One, because it does not affect their lives, (so they think.) And two, it happened to Jews. And frankly, in this day and age, the majority of the world does not care about Jews.
But that’s okay. More than okay. You know why? Because most Jews care about what happens to their fellow Jews. (And yes, it pains me to say “most Jews.”) And a few non-Jews care. And an occasional politician will care. But mainly, Jews care about Jews. Jews have each other. And that has to be and is enough.
World leaders knew what Arafat was from the beginning. They knew, without a doubt, that he was a terrorist. But they embraced him anyways, and pushed Israel to negotiate with him, all the while knowing Arafat’s desire was to destroy Israel. Part of that destruction came through killing the Israeli athletes.
After his direct involvement with the death of Americans and Jews, Arafat came to the United States (an event that could not have happened without State Department approval) in November of 1974, wearing a sidearm (or at least an empty holster; stories vary) and accompanied by several members of Black September, to speak at the United Nations, where he denounced Zionism as racism. And he became a regular visitor at the White House and Camp David, where he was treated as an authentic peace partner. He was never held accountable, by American leaders, for the death of Americans, much less for the death of Jews.
Nixon turned a blind eye to his own citizens being murdered by terrorists. A deadly precedent was set, sadly not only for American leaders who followed Nixon, but for Israeli ones too. Terrorism became a diplomatic tool despite the cost of lives.
The legitimization of Arafat as a statesman by American leaders, planted the seed in the mind of future terrorists that terrorism led to reward. And that it was a justified means to an end. (Never mind that Arafat made it very clear that his “end” was the end of the Jews.)
Though politicians will “deplore” acts of terrorism from behind a mic, they shake hands with, write “peace accords” with, and sympathize with, and sometimes even arm terrorists, proving that actions speak louder than words.
The widows of the athletes who were killed represent a wish and longing of how the world should react to terrorism. It should not only condemn it, but also fight against it in every instance. But the reality is different. Terrorism has become condoned and legitimized, especially when used against Jews. And Israel is expected to “play nice” with and to accept terrorists as peace partners.
Arafat, the mastermind terrorist behind the Munich murders, and so many other terrorists attacks, including the bombing of TWA Flight 707, was given the Noble Peace Prize. And yet, somehow, the widows of the men who were murdered still hope that the world cares. The world stopped caring a long time ago.
Jews have been terrorized for decades in and outside of the Land. And until Jews don’t give a damn what the rest of the world thinks about them, the terrorism will continue.
When Jewish leaders finally realize that the only proportionality to terrorism is an all out assault against terrorists who come in any form or fashion, including those in political suits, terrorism will end. And ironically, when Jews start saving themselves, they will literally save the rest of the world. One would hope at that point, that the rest of the world would have the decency to finally care.