Abu Mazen and the Munich Olympics massacre (continued)

January 11, 2005

Before reading this dispatch, please first see the explanatory note attached to the top of the other dispatch I just sent, titled Abu Mazen and the Holocaust.

The key article to consider in the dispatch below can also be found at sportsillustrated.cnn.com/si_online/news/2002/08/20/sb2/.

-- Tom Gross


REPEAT FROM JUNE 2003

From: Tom Gross
Subject: Abu Mazen and the Munich Olympics massacre
Date: June 8, 2003

A LEADER “UNCOMPROMISED BY TERROR”? ABU MAZEN, THE MUNICH OLYMPICS MASSACRE AND OTHER ATTACKS

[Note by Tom Gross]

There is strong evidence that Abu Mazen, the new Palestinian prime minister who was Yasser Arafat’s loyal deputy for four decades but now supposedly makes decisions independently of Arafat was one of the chief architects of the terrorist attack that killed 10 Israeli athletes and one American (David Berger) at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany.

Mohammed Daoud Oudeh, or Abu Daoud, the coordinator of the Munich attack claims Abu Mazen provided the funds and instructions to carry it out. Daoud first made this charge to a non-Arabic audience in his 1999 French language memoir, “Palestine: From Jerusalem to Munich.” He repeated it again in an interview last August with Sports Illustrated magazine. Abu Daoud said he was angered by the dozens of Palestinian terrorists allowed to return to the Palestinian-controlled territories as a result of the Oslo process while he remained persona non grata to Israel and the United States.

In his Sports Illustrated interview last August, Abu Daoud states: “Today, the Bush Administration seeks a Palestinian negotiating partner ‘uncompromised by terror,’ yet last year Abu Mazen met in Washington with Secretary of State Colin Powell.”

Daoud was also interviewed about the Munich massacre for a film called “One Day in September,” produced by Sony Pictures Classics. Director Kevin Macdonald said Abu Mazen admitted Black September was merely the cover name adopted by Fatah members when they wanted to carry out attacks on Jews. Abu Daoud recalled how Arafat and Abu Mazen both wished him luck and kissed him when he set about organizing the Munich attack. (Daoud has also repeated this in an interview with the Arab TV network al-Jazeera.)

The lack of interest in this story by the U.S. government and media (other than Sports Illustrated) is all the more surprising, given the substantial coverage over the last week to the arrest of Eric Rudolph, charged with setting off a bomb that killed one person in a park in downtown Atlanta during the 1996 Olympics (see article below).

***

I attach four articles in full below, with summaries first for those of you who don’t have time to read them in full.

-- Tom Gross

 

ARTICLE SUMMARIES

1. “New Palestinian PM behind Munich Olympics attack” (by Steve K. Walz, May 9, 2003).

“Mahmoud Abbas, known as Abu Mazen, provided financing for the terrorist attack that killed 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany, says Israeli attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, director of the Shurat Hadin Israel Law Center. In a letter to President George W. Bush and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, Darshan-Leitner called for an investigation into Abu Mazen’s role in the Sept. 5, 1972, attack, carried out by Arafat’s central Palestinian Liberation Organization faction Fatah. Operating under the name “Black September,” the terrorist group, sent a squad of armed Palestinians to attack dormitories housing the Israeli Olympic team. The gunmen murdered a coach and a member of the weightlifting team, then took nine other Israelis hostage. The Palestinians demanded they be transported to the Munich airport where a rescue attempt by German police failed, and all nine hostages were murdered. Last week, President Bush praised Abu Mazen as “a man dedicated to peace,” indicating he would invite him to the White House for talks after his cabinet was installed.”

2. Sports Illustrated Article (By Alexander Wolff, August 26, 2002).

Abu Mazen funded Munich Massacre. “Following the Oslo Accords of 1993, the mastermind of Black September’s Munich attack enjoyed a certain respectability. Abu Daoud, sat on the Palestinian National Council, where in 1996 he joined a majority in voting to revoke the clause in the PLO charter calling for Israel’s destruction [which in fact was never properly done - TG] ... All that changed in 1999 after Abu Daoud openly acknowledged his role in the Olympic attack, both in his memoir, Palestine: From Jerusalem to Munich, published in Paris, and in an interview with the Arab TV network al-Jazeera. Germany issued an international arrest warrant on Abu Daoud, and Israel canceled his travel credentials, barring him from the Palestinian lands he had spent his adult life trying to liberate. In the U.S., former senator Howard Metzenbaum (D., Ohio) who had watched the Munich crisis unfold on TV with his neighbors in suburban Cleveland, the parents of Israeli-American victim David Berger led a campaign to keep U.S. bookstores from stocking Abu Daoud’s memoir.”

3. “Elderly Woman Suing New Palestinian PM” (By Julie Stahl, CNS News, Jerusalem Bureau Chief, May 1, 2003)

“An American-Israeli citizen is filing lawsuits in Israel and the U.S. against Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas because, she claims, he ordered the terrorist murder of her daughter and son-in-law. Dina Horowitz and her husband Rabbi Eli Horowitz were murdered by Palestinian gunmen who burst into their home on March 7, 2003, as they sat at their dinner table celebrating the Sabbath in Kiryat Arba, just outside of the West Bank city of Hebron. Dina and Eli were both born in the United States. Dina’s mother Bernice Wolf, 78, is a dual American-Israeli citizen. Wolf said she wants to meet with President Bush “to ask him to explain to me why [Abbas], who ordered the murder of my daughter and financed the murder of 11 Israeli Olympic athletes, should come and be a peace negotiator between Israel and the Palestinians.” Wolf noted that just days before her daughter and son-in-law were murdered, Abbas said in newspaper interviews that it was permissible to murder Jews who lived in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. [TG adds - see the Arabic newspaper Al Sharq Alawsat on March 3, 2003]. “I formally request that the U.S. government cut off all ties to Abu Mazen, since Abu Mazen continues to advocate the murder of Jews,’ Wolf wrote to Bush.”

4. “Jewish lawyer to defend Eric Rudolph” (Associated Press, Birmingham, Alabama bureau, June 8, 2003).

“Eric Rudolph, the accused Olympic bomber portrayed over the years as a rabid hater of Jews, now finds himself represented by a Jewish lawyer who says he’s seen no evidence of anti-Semitism from his client. In an interview Thursday on NBC’s “Today” show, court-appointed defense attorney Richard S. Jaffe said he knew all about Rudolph’s supposed beliefs but said his client didn’t have a problem with his Jewish faith. Jaffe’s rabbi at Birmingham’s Temple Beth-El said he wasn’t concerned about a member of his congregation representing a man who has been depicted as violently anti-Semitic. Rudolph, arrested Saturday behind a grocery store in rural western North Carolina, is accused of detonating a powerful bomb that exploded outside a Birmingham abortion clinic on Jan. 29, 1998, killing a police officer and critically injuring a clinic nurse. He also is charged with setting off a bomb that killed one person and injured 150 others in a park in downtown Atlanta during the 1996 Olympics. Authorities also accused Rudolph in a pair of 1997 bombings in Atlanta at a lesbian nightclub and a building that housed an abortion clinic. Rudolph’s sister-in-law Deborah Rudolph, who worked with authorities to develop Rudolph’s profile during his five years on the run, said her brother-in-law denied that the Holocaust had ever happened, and claimed that the Jews now control the media and the government. His derisive nickname for the television set was “the electronic Jew.”


FULL ARTICLES

NEW PALESTINIAN PM BEHIND MUNICH OLYMPICS ATTACK

New Palestinian PM behind Munich Olympics attack
By Steve K. Walz
May 9, 2003

President Yasser Arafat’s newly appointed Palestinian Authority prime minister does not have the pristine past touted by his supporters, charges an Israeli civil rights group. Mahmoud Abbas, known as Abu Mazen, provided financing for the terrorist attack that killed 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany, says Israeli attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, director of the Shurat Hadin Israel Law Center.

In a letter to President George W. Bush and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, Darshan-Leitner called for an investigation into Abu Mazen’s role in the Sept. 5, 1972, attack, carried out by Arafat’s central Palestinian Liberation Organization faction Fatah.

Operating under the name “Black September,” the terrorist group, send a squad of armed Palestinians to attack dormitories housing the Israeli Olympic team. The gunmen murdered a coach and a member of the weightlifting team, then took nine other Israelis hostage. The Palestinians demanded they be transported to the Munich airport where a rescue attempt by German police failed, and all nine hostages were murdered.

Last week, President Bush praised Abu Mazen as “a man dedicated to peace,” indicating he would invite him to the White House for talks after his cabinet was installed. The Palestinian parliament meets today to confirm the new prime minister as head of a cabinet created under international pressure to curb Arafat’s powers as president.

Shurat Hadin claims it has contacts within the Palestinian Authority itself who point out the hypocrisy of Abu Mazen’s insistence he was never been involved in terrorism.

The Israeli group also notes the mastermind of the Munich attack, Mohammed Daoud Oudeh, or Abu Daoud, claims Abu Mazen provided the funds to carry out the Black September attack. Daoud made that charge in his 1999 French language memoir, “Palestine: From Jerusalem to Munich,” and again in an interview last August with Don Yaeger of Sports Illustrated magazine.

Abu Daoud said he was angered by the dozens of Palestinian terrorists allowed to return to the Palestinian territories as a result of the Oslo process while he remained persona non grata to Israel and the United States. Abu Mazen, Daoud complained, is now considered “respectable” even though he also was involved in the Munich attack. Abu Mazen, part of the Palestinian hierarchy for nearly four decades, has served as PLO executive committee chairman.

In his book Abu Daoud states: “After Oslo in 1993, Abu Mazen went to the White House Rose Garden for a photo op with Arafat, President Bill Clinton and Israel’s Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres. Do you think that would have been possible if the Israelis had known that Abu Mazen was the financier of our operation? I doubt it.”

In the Sports Illustrated interview, he added: “Today, the Bush Administration seeks a Palestinian negotiating partner ‘uncompromised by terror,’ yet last year Abu Mazen met in Washington with Secretary of State Colin Powell.” Daoud also was interviewed about the Munich massacre for a film called “One Day in September,” produced by John Battsek and Arthur Cohn for Sony Pictures Classics. Director Kevin Macdonald said Abu Mazen admitted Black September was merely the cover name adopted by Fatah members when they wanted to carry out terrorist attacks.

The PLO operative recalled how Arafat and Abu Mazen both wished him luck and kissed him when he set about organizing the Munich attack.

The Shurat Hadin letter to President Bush said: “Under your leadership the United States has declared that it will no longer conduct diplomacy with those tainted by terrorist pasts. It appears that the new Palestinian leader to which the United States and Israel are now pinning all their hopes, was also involved in murderous attacks perpetrated by the PLO’s Black September. Abu Mazen’s alleged role in the brutal killing of the Israeli athletes and American Citizen David Berger must also preclude his involvement in the negotiations between Israel and their Arab neighbors.”

Abu Mazen also has been criticized for a 1983 book in which he suggested the figure of 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust was “peddled” by the Jews. In “The Other Side: The Secret Relationship between Nazism and the Zionist Movement,” he said the Zionists collaborated with the Nazis to murder Jews in a plot to gain sympathy for creation of the state of Israel.

Nevertheless, as one of the PLO architects of the Oslo Accords, Abu Mazen is regarded by Europe and the United States as the best hope to lead the Palestinians to renewed negotiations, known as the “Road Map” to peace.

His supporters also point to statements he has made against the Palestinian armed struggle, or Intifada, as evidence of his moderate credentials. However, analysts, such as the Middle East Media Research Institute, contend his position has been primarily pragmatic, based on strategic reasons.

 

SPORTS ILLUSTRATED ARTICLE ON THE MUNICH MASSACRE

The Mastermind: Thirty years after he helped plan the terror strike, Abu Daoud remains in hiding and unrepentant
By Alexander Wolff
Sports Illustrated
August 26, 2002

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/si_online/news/2002/08/20/sb2/

Following the Oslo Accords of 1993, the mastermind of Black September’s Munich attack enjoyed a certain respectability. Mohammed Daoud Oudeh, a.k.a. Abu Daoud, sat on the Palestinian National Council, where in 1996 he joined a majority in voting to revoke the clause in the PLO charter calling for Israel’s destruction. Though Israel had long known of his role at Munich Mossad was believed to have been involved in a 1981 assassination attempt in which he was shot six times he even carried an Israeli-issued VIP pass that allowed him to shuttle between his home in Amman, Jordan, and the occupied territories.

All that changed in 1999 after Abu Daoud openly acknowledged his role in the Olympic attack, both in his memoir, Palestine: From Jerusalem to Munich, published in Paris, and in an interview with the Arab TV network al-Jazeera. Germany issued an international arrest warrant on Abu Daoud, and Israel canceled his travel credentials, barring him from the Palestinian lands he had spent his adult life trying to liberate. In the U.S., former senator Howard Metzenbaum (D., Ohio) who had watched the Munich crisis unfold on TV with his neighbors in suburban Cleveland, the parents of Israeli-American victim David Berger led a campaign to keep U.S. bookstores from stocking Abu Daoud’s memoir. (Arcade, which owns the U.S. rights, still hasn’t set a publication date for an English-language version of the book.)

In late July, SI’s Don Yaeger went to the Middle East to find the 72-year-old Abu Daoud. After five days in Syria, where he met with leaders of several Palestinian groups, including the Palestinian Authority, PA president Yasir Arafat’s Fatah faction and the militant Hamas, Yaeger received a call from Abu Daoud, who said he was in Cyprus. Abu Daoud, who would not reveal where he resides saying only that he lives with his wife on a pension provided by the PA agreed to answer written questions. Among his claims, in his memoir and to SI, are these:

Though he wasn’t involved in conceiving or implementing it, “the [Munich] operation had the endorsement of Arafat.” Arafat is not known to have responded to the allegations in Abu Daoud’s book. In May 1972 four Black Septembrists hijacked a Sabena flight from Brussels to Tel Aviv, hoping to free comrades from Israeli jails. But Israeli special forces stormed the plane, killing or capturing all the terrorists and freeing every passenger, leaving Arafat, by Abu Daoud’s account, desperate to boost morale in the refugee camps by showing that Israel was vulnerable.

Though he didn’t know what the money was being spent for, longtime Fatah official Mahmoud Abbas, a.k.a. Abu Mazen, was responsible for the financing of the Munich attack. Abu Mazen could not be reached for comment regarding Abu Daoud’s allegation. After Oslo in 1993, Abu Mazen went to the White House Rose Garden for a photo op with Arafat, President Bill Clinton and Israel’s Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres. “Do you think that ... would have been possible if the Israelis had known that Abu Mazen was the financier of our operation?” Abu Daoud writes. “I doubt it.” Today the Bush Administration seeks a Palestinian negotiating partner “uncompromised by terror,” yet last year Abu Mazen met in Washington with Secretary of State Colin Powell.

The German assertion that the team’s two senior commandos had infiltrated the Olympic Village in the weeks before the attack isn’t true. Abu Daoud speculates that the Germans found this story useful, to make the attack seem like an inside job and divert attention from their poor security measures.

While he doesn’t regret his role in the operation, Abu Daoud told SI, “I would be against any operation like Munich ever again. At the time, it was the correct thing to do for our cause... The operation brought the Palestinian issue into the homes of 500 million people who never previously cared about Palestinian victims at the hands of the Israelis.” Today, he says, an attack on an event like the Olympics would only damage the Palestinians’ image.

 

ELDERLY WOMAN SUING NEW PALESTINIAN PM

Elderly woman suing new Palestinian PM
By Julie Stahl
CNSNews.com Jerusalem Bureau Chief
May 1, 2003

An American-Israeli citizen is filing lawsuits in Israel and the U.S. against Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas because, she claims, he ordered the terrorist murder of her daughter and son-in-law.

Dina Horowitz and her husband Rabbi Eli Horowitz were murdered by Palestinian gunmen who burst into their home on March 7, 2003, as they sat at their dinner table celebrating the Sabbath in Kiryat Arba, just outside of the West Bank city of Hebron.

Dina and Eli were both born in the United States. Dina’s mother Bernice Wolf, 78, is a dual American-Israeli citizen, who has lived here for 15 years.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do,” Wolf said in a telephone interview. “My whole life is shattered.”

Wolf said she wants to meet with President Bush “to ask him to explain to me why [Abbas], who ordered the murder of my daughter and financed the murder of 11 Israeli Olympic athletes, should come and be a peace negotiator between Israel and the Palestinians.”

This week, news reports indicated that Abbas (also known as Abu Mazen) had financed the PLO faction called Black September when the group attacked Israeli athletes and their coaches at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. Eleven athletes and their coaches were killed, some during a botched German rescue operation.

Wolf noted that just days before her daughter and son-in-law were murdered, Abbas said in newspaper interviews that it was permissible to murder Jews who lived in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

In an interview published on the website of the Arabic newspaper Al Sharq Alawsat on March 3, 2003, Abbas spoke about the Egyptian-sponsored ceasefire talks with all the Palestinian militant factions.

“On the basis of the talks held in Cairo [between the different Palestinian factions] we agreed upon the freezing of Palestinian military operations [terrorist attacks] for one year,” Abbas was quoted as saying in translated excerpts, which appeared originally on the Israeli army’s website.

“This, on the condition that the chief Egyptian mediators receive [Israeli] guarantees about an Israeli military cease-fire, a cessation of arrests [of Palestinian terrorists] and on the withdrawal [of the army] to their positions before September 28, 2000...

“We did not say, however, that we are giving up the armed struggle. It is our right to resist. The intifada must continue. It is the right of the Palestinian people to resist and use all possible means in order to defend its presence and existence. I add and say that if the Israelis come to your land in order to erect a settlement, then it is your right to defend what is yours...

“The restriction applies only to “shahada-seeking” [suicide] operations and going out to attack in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. There is no justification to go out [of the territories] to fight the army,” he said.

Several days later, Palestinian Legislative Council member Qadura Fares confirmed in a radio interview that “resistance to the occupation” was legitimate and would continue until the Palestinians believed that serious negotiations to end what they consider the Israeli occupation were underway, according to the Independent Media Review and Analysis website.

Wolf delivered a letter on Thursday to the U.S. Consulate in eastern Jerusalem, which deals with Palestinian affairs, informing the U.S. government that she had filed a suit against Abbas in Israel.

“I have asked the Israeli government [to] indict Abu Mazen for the direct complicity in the cold-blooded murder of my daughter, Dina Horowitz and my son-in-law, Rabbi Eli Horowitz,” Wolf wrote.

“My children were murdered by a PLO terrorist... four days after Abu Mazen declared that it was permissible to murder Jews who live in [the West Bank and Gaza Strip].

“I formally request that the U.S. government cut off all ties to Abu Mazen, since Abu Mazen continues to advocate the murder of Jews,” she wrote.

In Israel, Wolf is asking that the Israeli government indict Abbas, as the head of the PLO Executive Committee, for incitement to murder.

In the U.S. Wolf plans to sue Abbas and the PLO for damages.

Abbas and his government were sworn in on Wednesday. On Tuesday, he denounced terrorism and pledged to collect illegal weapons in a speech before the PLC. Israeli officials have said they are waiting to see if he has the will and ability to stop terrorism before passing judgment.

 

JEWISH LAWYER TO DEFEND ERIC RUDOLPH

Jewish lawyer to defend Eric Rudolph
The Associated Press
Birmingham, Alabama
June 8, 2003

Eric Rudolph, the accused Olympic bomber portrayed over the years as a rabid hater of Jews, now finds himself represented by a Jewish lawyer who says he’s seen no evidence of anti-Semitism from his client.

In an interview Thursday on NBC’s “Today” show, court-appointed defense attorney Richard S. Jaffe said he knew all about Rudolph’s supposed beliefs but said his client didn’t have a problem with his Jewish faith.

“There’s been a public perception painted of Eric Rudolph that’s far from accurate,” said Jaffe, who specializes in death penalty cases and has helped get three Alabama inmates off death row.

Jaffe’s rabbi at Birmingham’s Temple Beth-El said he wasn’t concerned about a member of his congregation representing a man who has been depicted as violently anti-Semitic.

“I myself detest Eric Rudolph,” said Rabbi Brian Glusman. “I would certainly support the death penalty for him. But I also believe he’s entitled to a good defense.”

Rudolph, arrested Saturday behind a grocery store in rural western North Carolina, is accused of detonating a powerful bomb that exploded outside a Birmingham abortion clinic on Jan. 29, 1998, killing a police officer and critically injuring a clinic nurse.

He also is charged with setting off a bomb that killed one person and injured 150 others in a park in downtown Atlanta during the 1996 Olympics. Authorities also accused Rudolph in a pair of 1997 bombings in Atlanta at a lesbian nightclub and a building that housed an abortion clinic.

Rudolph’s sister-in-law Deborah Rudolph, who worked with authorities to develop Rudolph’s profile during his five years on the run, said her brother-in-law denied that the Holocaust had ever happened, and claimed that the Jews now control the media and the government. His derisive nickname for the television set was “the electronic Jew.”

Meanwhile, in western North Carolina, federal agents and local authorities were working Thursday to piece together Rudolph’s life as a fugitive. FBI Agent Chris Swecker said agents were still investigating whether Rudolph had help on the run.

Murphy police Chief Mark Thigpen and Cherokee County Sheriff Keith Lovin said they were checking whether Rudolph helped sustain himself by breaking into some of the uninhabited vacation cabins that dot the mountains.

They said they were going back over a list of break-ins in the region over the past five years, some of which resulted in the theft of such small items as canned goods, old boots, clothes, paper towels and soap.

“I went to one house yesterday where they ignored some items that I believe a burglar would have taken,” Assistant Murphy Police Chief Jerry Trull said. “And items were missing like dry socks.”


All notes and summaries copyright © Tom Gross. All rights reserved.