King Hussein of Jordan was the only Arab leader to condemn the attack calling it “a savage crime against humanity.” Of course, this is most likely less in support of Israel, and more in an effort to discredit the PLO whom he had crushed two years earlier, as they were clearly seeking to assassinate him and take over Jordan.
A Heroes Welcome…for the dead and the living
The bodies of five of the terrorists were delivered to Libya where they were buried as heroes with full military honors. On October 9th, in response to the hijacking of a Lufthansa passenger jet by two Black September members, the remaining three hijackers were released by West Germany and received as heroes—even having the opportunity to give their account of the operation at a press conference. The press conference was broadcast worldwide. The Israelis were not consulted on the decision to capitulate to the hijackers demands.
a demonic deal?
There is a theory that the hijacking was staged by the Germans and the PLO.
“Why were there no passengers on the plane as it left Damascus? Why were there only 12 passengers and no women or children on the plane as it left Beirut? Why had the German government so quickly agreed to the demands? When Jamal Al-Gashey was back on Arab soil he found out why: Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) leaders told him that the entire hijacking had been a setup between the PLO and the German government.”[i]
While the president of the Munich organizing committee, Willi Daume, wanted to cancel the remainder of the games, IOC President Avery Brundage countered, “The games must go on, and we must… continue our efforts to keep them clean, pure and honest.” He prevailed with the blessing of Israel.
The Terrorists of Palestinian Group Black September
Dutch runner Jos Hermens stated, “You give a party, and someone is killed at the party, you don’t continue the party. I’m going home.” Many other athletes left, including whole delegations.
“The families of some victims have asked the IOC to establish a permanent memorial to the athletes. The IOC has declined, saying that to introduce a specific reference to the victims could ‘alienate other members of the Olympic community,’ according to the BBC.”[ii]
The shameless actions of the IOC continue even today, as they have refused to acknowledge during opening ceremonies this Friday the deaths of the Israeli Olympians.
As for the Israelis, they commenced a number of secret missions to assassinate everyone connected to the Munich attacks. The attacks continued for twenty years, ending with the killing of the PLO head of intelligence in Paris in 1992.
The surviving terrorists
The final question is what happened to the three terrorists who were released as heroes to Libya? Two of the three were killed as part of the Mossad Operation Wrath of God and the third lives in hiding in North Africa or Syria, fearing for his life.
After several failed attempts, an Israeli spy in Lebanon posing as a university student rented a flat one block from Ali Hassan Salameh, thought to be the mastermind of the attack and the chief of operations for Black September. A Volkswagen (ironic) full of explosives was placed in a car below the woman’s apartment. One report has her signaling a Mossad agent who then remotely detonated the explosives, while another has her as the killer. In both scenarios, the Palestinian terrorist ceased to be in this world.
Ehud Barak: A Cross-dresser with a purpose!
One of the better-known operations of Wrath of God has former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak dressing as a woman in 1973, along with several other Israeli commandos. They entered Lebanon from the sea and posed as tourist couples. They had information three senior PLO leaders were living in a certain apartment building. All three targets were eliminated.
In 1999, Jamal Al-Gashey, the lone survivor, was interviewed for the Academy award winning documentary, One Day in September. In this film, German officials admit that the hijacking that secured the surviving terrorists’ release was staged.
[i] The Bizarre Aftermath of the 1972 Munich Olympic Disaster, John S. Craig