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36-years without an official Olympic memorial, Israel's Munich athletes memorialized privately in Beijing

Memorial event for Israeli athletes murdered in 1972 Games draws considerable attendance, but also considerable gaffes. Widows of slain athletes call on International Olympic Committee to recognize massacre as inseparable part of Olympic history

In keeping with the tradition established in 1976 at the Montreal Games, the Israeli delegation to Beijing held a memorial service on Monday in honor of the victims of 1972 Munich Olympics massacre. The ceremony drew considerable attendance, and several high-profile figures came to pay their respects to the memories of the 11 athlete, including members of the current Israeli Olympic delegation, chairmen of the Israeli Olympic Committee, Israel's representative to the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Israel's ambassador to China Amos Nadai, and Minister of Science, Culture and Sport, Raleb Majadele.

Also present was the former IOC president, Juan Antonio Samaranch. Samaranch, who during his lengthy tenure as president refused to recognize the victims as part of the heritage of the Games and address their deaths in the various opening ceremonies throughout the years, said: "This murder is the blackest event in the history of the Olympics. It is good to see that despite this Israel continues to move forward and grow, as a nation in general and in regards to its sports in particular."  Here is the trailer for Steven Spielberg's "Munich," which traces Israel's campaign to avenge the deaths of the 11 at the hands of Palestinian terrorists.

Blogger, Debbie Schlussel, comments: Recently, I watched the DVD of "21 Hours at Munich," which ABC aired in 1976 as a TV movie. It was nominated for two Emmys. Today, none of the networks would have the guts to air this movie, much less would the Hollywood charlatans nominate it for any award. It is chilling and tearjerking at the end when Israeli athletes in helicopters know they are about to die and utter the "Shema," the Jewish prayer about the monotheism of G-d.  Watch it all here:

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