What happened at the Munich Olympics in 1972

In the improvement of Munich invested enormous funds, building a metro, many new hotels, reconstructing the central part of the city. A huge Olympic stadium for 80 thousand seats was erected with an original roof resembling a web, as well as a number of other sports venues, where participants of the games were to compete. And all these facilities were equipped with the most modern technical devices at that time.

The opening ceremony of the Olympics was held on August 26. 7170 athletes who competed for 195 sets of medals took part in competitions. The national team of the USSR performed brilliantly, having won more than all gold medals โ€” 50. The second-placed U.S. team had 33 of them.

Unfortunately, this wonderful sporting celebration proved to be overshadowed by tragedy. At dawn on 5 September, Palestinian terrorists, entering the Olympic Village, killed two members of the Israeli sports delegation and took nine more hostage. The terrorists demanded the release of several hundred prisoners, and a little later made an additional demand โ€” to provide them with a plane to Cairo, as well as the ability to reach them unhindered airfield along with the hostages. As a result of a hurriedly planned and insufficiently professionally conducted rescue operation, all nine hostages, five terrorists and one policeman were killed. Three terrorists managed to capture alive. The

members of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) had a very serious question: how to respond to this egregious incident, whether to go on or complete the games? In addition, many athletes, including the surviving members of the Israeli national team, announced their departure from Munich. After an uphill discussion and a one-day break, the IOC decided to continue with the Olympics. The competition ended on 10 September.

This tragedy led to a dramatic increase in security measures at subsequent Olympics, particularly in the Olympic Villages. Special anti-terrorist units have also been established in many countries.

Leave a Comment