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It is true that Menachem Begin planted a bomb at the King David Hotel, then warned the hotel of it so they could evacuate. The bomb exploded. There is no excuse for this action. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

            It is true that Yasser Arafat made his career as a terrorist. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

            In 1936, Adolf Hitler hosted the Berlin Olympics. He used it as a showcase for his New Order, a launching pad, if you will, for World War II. In 1945, his Thousand Year Reich went down after 12. Under the enlightened leadership of Konrad Adenaur and Willie Brandt, West Germany worked its way back into the family of nations, as did its Axis partner, Japan. Tokyo felt comfortable enough in its skin to successfully host the 1964 Olympics. It was a great celebration and a chance for the world to get together and see the success of Democracy.

            Germany wanted in, too. They were proud of the way they had rebounded to become a thriving economy, with tolerant racial and religious views, free elections, and partnership with the U.S. They were awarded the 1972 Games. The 1968 Olympics had been held in the thin air of Mexico City, with mixed results. Student uprisings shortly before the Games had to be put down. Revolution was in the air. It was not just Che Guevara's ghost or Castro's minions who made their presence known. It was the American Black Man.

            Harry Edwards, a black sociology professor at San Jose State, organized a boycott of the Games by African-American athletes, protesting the exploitation of blacks in the land of the free. Among those who did not participate as a result were Lew Alcindor (later Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), the All-American basketball star at UCLA.

            Many blacks did not choose to go, but boxer George Foreman won the Gold medal, then paraded around the ring with an American flag. He became an instant hero for not telling the world that he hated the White Man.

            A couple of black sprinters had a different opinion. After placing one-two, they donned black gloves and lifted their fists in a head-down "black power salute" while the National Anthem played.

The Germans wanted nothing to do with politics four years later at Munich. They wanted to show the world happy, drunk Bavarians, as if to confirm that the Nazis really were an army full of Sergeant Schultzes. The last possible thing they wanted anybody to think about were Nuremberg rallies, Swastikas, and for God sake, not those pesky death camps.

Let the Games begin.

Munich was star-crossed. An America Jewish swimmer named Mark Spitz hailed from Carmichael, California and the University of Indiana. He had the looks of the Marlboro Man, and also happened to be the greatest swimmer in the history of swimming. He entered seven races, won seven Golds, and set seven world records. But strange things were happening. Another California swimmer, Rick DeMont had his Gold taken away because he had asthma. There was a mix-up over whether his medication was legal or not, and after he was tested his medal was confiscated. Another sprinter slept through his qualifying heats because his coach had not told him the proper starting time.

The American basketball team had their Gold medal stolen from them. A bunch of college kids, they faced the Soviets, who paid their players by making them officers in the Red Army, when all they did was practice and play basketball. The U.S.S.R. drew from the entire Soviet Empire. Excellent players were available from Lithuania, the Ukraine, the Baltic's, the Balkan's, you name it. Still, it was inconceivable that they could beat an American Olympic squad. Basketball was America's game, just like football and baseball. A guy named Hank Iba, however, coached the U.S. team. Iba looked like Dr. Naismith had taught him the game. Blessed with players of speed, agility and marvelous athleticism, he completely eliminated all those traits from his arsenal in favor of a four-corner stall.

The Soviets came out firing on all cylinders, blasting to a large early lead. In the second half, it looked as if all hope was lost, but the Americans did not have the foggiest interest in losing to a bunch of commies. They fought back in that way Americans fight back. Slowly but surely, they inched their way back into the game. With a few seconds on the clock, down by a point, All-American Doug Collins was fouled. In the most political two free throws in the history of sport, Collins sunk them both to give the U.S. a 50-49 victory.

There was about a second left on the clock, however. The Soviets positioned a man down by the basket and tried a desperation pass to him, but it went for naught, the buzzer sounded, and the U.S. had their Gold medal. A giant celebration followed. The boys headed off the floor.

Then a Bulgarian official stepped forward. He said the game was not over. The game was as over as over ever is over, but the people in charge of official decisions that day were Communists. You guessed it. It was not over.

The Soviets placed their man down by the basket again and attempted another long pass. First the Soviet fouled one American defender by pushing him the way Dick Butkus tackled ball carriers. He caught the ball. The buzzer sounded, ending the game. He pushed another American the way Lawrence Taylor tackled ball carriers. About two seconds after the buzzer sounded to end the game, with both Americans lying on the ground after having been fouled, the Soviet dropped the ball through the hoop.

The Communist officials in charge said the Soviets had "won," 51-50. It was the single worst moment in the history of sports. The Americans never accepted the Silver medals, and if you ever want to get a charge out of someone, go talk to one of those players and bring up the subject of Munich '72.

This was the situation on September 5. Politics and bad feelings, which is what the Games were supposed to avoid. It was too bad, but as Frank Sinatra said, "that's life." 

At 4:30 A.M. on September 5, five Arab terrorists wearing tracksuits climbed the six and one-half foot fence surrounding the Olympic Village. Once inside, three others who had gained entrance with credentials met them. Within 24 hours, 11 Israelis, five terrorists, and a German policeman were dead.

Just before five in the morning, the terrorists knocked on the door of Israeli wrestling coach Moshe Weinberg. He opened the door, realized immediately something was wrong and shouted a warning. Weinberg and weightlifter Joseph Romano attempted to block the door while their members escaped. They were killed by the terrorists. The Arabs then rounded up nine Israelis to hold as hostages.

At 9:30 A.M., the terrorists announced that they were Palestinian Arabs, sent by the PLO terrorist Yasser Arafat. They demanded that Israel release 234 Arab prisoners in Israeli jails and Germany release two German terrorist leaders imprisoned in Frankfurt. They demanded their own safe passage out of Germany. Negotiations were struck with German authorities, who were willing to do anything to end the nightmare of Jewish hostages on German soil. A trip to the NATO air base at Firstenfeldbruck, by bus and then two helicopters was arranged, in order to board a plane for Cairo. German sharpshooters were standing by with orders to simultaneously kill all the terrorists without harming the hostages.

The plan did not work. The result was a bloody shootout between the Germans and Palestinians. At 3:00 A.M., the Palestinians set off a grenade in one helicopter, killing all aboard. Terrorists in the second helicopter shot to death the rest of the blindfolded Israelis. Three Palestinian were captured and held in Germany.

On October 29, a Palestinian who demanded that the Munich killers be released hijacked a Lufthansa jet. The Germans freed them, and they walked out with shit eating grins on their Arab faces. There are different ways to do things. There is the American way. There is the Israeli way.

Then there is the European way.

Arafat and Fatah, Arafat's faction of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), called themselves Black September, as if that hid the fact it was Arafat and Fatah. Munich has receded in memory, but the next time you see Arafat's reprehensible self (better yet, footage of Arafat's reprehensible self partyin' it up with Bill Clinton), remember this story. Clinton received Arafat as if he was a hero. No Republican ever did that before or after Clinton. Only after sidelining Arafat has a chance for peace become real. Recent events have demonstrated that Arafat refuses to cede power among the Palestinian political structure. Until he is permanently sidelined, real peace and independence for his people will not happen.

 Salah Khalaf (aka Abu Iyad) officially headed Black September. The press played along, as if they really were separate. Abu Iyad’s book, "Stateless", explained that Black September was tied to Fatah, but not part of it, as if these terrorist organizations have some kind of official capacity.

"Black September was not a terrorist organization," Abu Iyad said, "but was rather an auxiliary unit of the resistance movement, at a time when the latter was unable to fully realize its military and political potential. The members of the organization always denied any ties between their organization and Fatah or the PLO. I myself am personally acquainted with many of them, and can state with conviction that most of them belong to various Fedayeen organizations."

Hollywood responded to Munich with a nice little movie called "The Little Drummer Girl", starring Dianne Keaton. It tried to make terrorism look idealistic, like an ACLU lawyer defending a black couple from housing discrimination.  

Abu Daoud admitted that he masterminded the massacre in "Memoirs of a Palestinian Terrorist", published in 1999. The press tried to say they were shocked that the PLO had actually been behind Munich. They had been promoting Arafat for the Nobel after he and Clinton put their act together beginning in 1993. What a pair.

In truth, Daoud told Jordanian police in 1972, "There is no such organization called Black September. Fatah announces its own operations under this name so that Fatah will not appear as the direct executor of the operation."

Golda Meir had her agents hunt down and kill those behind it. The U.N. condemned her for it. The Mossad initiated "Wrath of God" units operating through the Mossad channels while another unit recruited trained specialists, using covert means. The "normal" assassination teams failed in their mission, exposing the operation. The second team, however, killed five of the terrorists. Three were eliminated in joint Mossad-IDF operations, and got four more associated with other crimes against Israel.

Abu Daoud escaped, eventually claiming the terrorists did not mean to harm the athletes. He used the tried and true "blame the Germans" defense. They were "stubborn," he said. Daoud was awarded the Palestine Prize for Culture in 1999 for his book.

Amin al-Hindi, who heads Arafat's General Intelligence Service, is still at large. Arafat attempted to name Munich terrorist Mustafa Liftawi (Abu Firas) as Palestinian Authority police chief in Ram'Allah in 1995.

In 2000, the official newspaper of Yasser Arafat's Palestinian Authority (Al-Hayat Al-Jadida) begged Arab delegations to boycott the Olympic Games in Australia because a moment of silence was planned in memory of the 11 dead Israelis.

Res ipsa loquiter.