A moment of silence at the Olympic ceremony could, I fear, embarrass Israel. It’s no secret that the International Olympic Committee does not want to ‘politicize’ this issue even more. Holding a minute of silence for Israelis murdered in cold blood by Palestinian terrorists – the way we see it, or Israeli men of military age killed by Palestinian freedom fighters – as much of the Muslim and Arab world sees it – will politicize the opening ceremony to the extreme. We will be accused of exploiting the ceremony for propaganda purposes. We call it commemoration, the world will call it propaganda.
Let’s face it folks, Israel is not loved abroad. You knew that, right? It’s not loved amongst British people, it’s not loved amongst European people, it’s not loved amongst most African and Asian nations, and it is certainly loathed amongst Muslim and Arab nations. If a moment of silence were to be held at the Olympic stadium tonight, where not just Americans, Canadians, Australians and Micronesians are in attendance, chances are quite good that our minute of silence will not be fully respected. Actually, chances are quite good even that it could be disrespected, even booed. And if that happened, if the minute of silence for Israel’s 11 murdered athletes were booed, what would we have achieved? We, as Israelis, will just feel disheartened, disgusted, upset. How would we feel if we saw, actually saw, just how few friends we have in the world?
On the other hand, maybe that’s the best argument to hold a minute of silence at the opening ceremony: to show us in stark, unbearable terms how most of the world’s nations hate us. Of course we know this already don’t we? But we want to see it for ourselves, don’t we? And what better platform, what bigger stage, can there be than the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games, watched live by over 4 billion people around the world? What if the entire world watched as Israel’s minute of silence was booed and our country humiliated? The memory of our fallen ridiculed? Hey, it happens every year at the UN General Assembly and twice on Sundays at the UN Human Rights Council. So why should it be any different at the Olympic opening ceremony?
And this is perhaps the biggest open secret of them all. This is what Israel’s representative on the International Olympic Committee Alex Gilady knows, and refuses to say. He can’t bear to tell us the sad truth: that because we are Jews, because of our war with the Palestinians, because of what happened with the Turks, and the Lebanese, and so many other becauses – that a minute of silence for our murdered Munich athletes could actually very well turn out to be a minute of deafening cacophony of hate for Israel.
We should spare ourselves that. The IOC is doing us a favor by rejecting it.
What’s to be done? We know this is the way things really are. This is why our athletes were murdered in the first place. These games are rigged.