Terrorism and Security in the Olympics

Topics: Olympic Games, Summer Olympic Games, Germany Pages: 4 (1145 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Terrorism and Security in the Olympics

Security is a fundamental notion in sports. Nowadays athletes are viewed often through the media, therefore they are recognizable. In the Olympics security measures must be taken to protect the athletes. There are many different nationalities involved therefore security has to be taken in order to ensure that there aren't conflicting views that could possibly be damaging towards another team. But quite often it cannot be prevented.

On the morning of September 5, 1972, the members of the Israeli delegation awoke in their quarters in the Olympic village to the desperate cries of wrestling referee Joseph Gottfreund. Eight Arab commandos (from the Palestinian terrorist organization Black September) broke into the Olympic compound in Munich. In an attempt to create time for an escape, Joseph Gottfreund tried to block off the door to the quarters in order to stall the intruders. He told his colleagues to leave the premises. The terrorist shot and killed him immediately along with Yaakov Springer, the weightlifting referee. Those in the adjoining apartments who were not woken by the muffled cries were woken from the sounds of machine guns. The commandos then took nine others of the eighteen-member Israeli Olympic team hostage. They then settled into the compound for a siege. The terrorists imprisoned and tied up the athletes and their coaches inside the apartments. They were moved into one of the delegates' room where they were guarded by eight of the terrorists. Their weapons included sub-machine guns, pistols and grenades. Moshe Weinberg, a wrestling referee, and Joseph Romano, a weightlifter, were killed during an effort to free themselves from the terrorists.

Their reasons for holding the Israelis hostage were that they wanted to persuade the release of two hundred Arab guerrillas that were being held in Israel. The terrorists demanded that the prisoners be flown from Israel to an Arab country,...
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