Reporting Jon Keller
BOSTON (CBS) – As the Summer Olympics play out over the next couple of weeks, I’m sure we will all marvel at the skill and courage of the athletes. Their stories of overcoming physical and social obstacles to excel at their sports are often inspirational.
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But for me, and I hope for you, the experience will be leavened with disgust at the cowardice and stupidity of Jacques Rogge, head of the International Olympic Committee, and his enablers, who are once again complicit in a show of callousness and moral impotence that makes a sham out of the notion of the Olympic movement as a positive political force.
The London Games coincide with the 40th anniversary of the massacre of Israeli athletes by Palestinian terrorists at the 1972 Munich Olympics. It was one of the most significant historical events in Olympic history, demonstrating the folly of the notion that sports trumps politics.
And for the Israelis, Jews around the world, and all decent people, it was an especially disturbing reminder of how little progress we’d made since the 1930’s; the Germans ignored warnings of the attack, ignored Israeli pleas for better security, tried to buy off the perps, and ultimately let the few surviving killers walk free.
So it’s entirely fitting that survivors of the Olympic victims and many others have called for a moment of silence at tonight’s opening ceremonies to remember the massacre.
But Rogge says no: “We feel that the Opening Ceremony is an atmosphere that is not fit to remember such a tragic incident.”
Of course, that didn’t stop him from leading a moment of silence at the 2010 Winter Games to honor a Georgian luger who had died in an accident.
And during his time as head of the Olympics, he has condoned the Iranian policy of barring its athletes from competing against Israelis.
In Rogge’s book, enabling Jew-hating is an acceptable part of the Olympic tradition.
With creatures like this running the show, the Olympics will never live up to its political hype.
So enjoy the athletic competition. I will.
But don’t try to tell me it’s anything more than that.
You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.