Israeli archives releases Munich documents

Aug. 29, 2012 at 8:05 AM
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JERUSALEM, Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Israel's State Archives released 45 documents to mark the 40th anniversary of the killing of 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.

The archives said the documents, dubbed "Special Publication: The Fortieth Anniversary of the Massacre of the Israeli Athletes in Munich," reflect the government's actions during and after the disaster. The documents were reviewed by Israeli media outlets in advance of publication on the archives' Web site.

While some of the documents have been heavily edited to protect highly classified information, they reveal a chronology of events on the night of Sept. 5, 1972, including foreign ministry cables, minutes of cabinet meetings and the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee during that period, and official correspondence between Israel and Germany, The Jerusalem Post said.

The documents also reveal Germany ignored warnings of an attack during the Olympics and cooperated with the perpetrators in the aftermath, Haaretz said.

"If there is any tangible manifestation of schizophrenia, it was that night," then-Prime Minister Golda Meir said of the events when she met with ministers and senior aides in her home in Jerusalem to monitor hostage rescue effort. Israeli officials were first elated when it appeared the rescue was successful, the paper said, but the mood quickly shifted to despair when it became apparent nine of the hostages were dead. Two other Israelis were killed in the initial confrontation with the terrorists at the athletes' residence.

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