Munich Massacre

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The victims of the massacre.

The Munich massacre was an attack during the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, West Germany, at which eleven Israeli Olympic team members were taken hostage and eventually killed, along with a German police officer, by the Palestinian terrorist group Black September. It was coordinated by Black September's chief of operations Ali Hassan Salameh.

Shortly after the crisis began, a Black September spokesman demanded that 234 Palestinian prisoners jailed in Israel and the German-held founders of the Red Army Faction (Andreas Baader and Ulrike Meinhof) be released. Black September called the operation "Iqrit and Biram", after two Palestinian Christian villages whose inhabitants were expelled by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) during the 1948 Arab–Israeli War.

The commander of the terrorist group, Luttif Afif, was born to Jewish and Christian parents. His group was associated with secular nationalism, working for the rights of Palestinians in Israel. German neo-Nazis gave the attackers logistical assistance.

Police officers killed five of the eight Black September members during a failed rescue attempt. A German policeman was killed in the crossfire. They captured the three survivors. The next month, following the hijacking of Lufthansa Flight 615, the German government released these men in a hostage exchange. Mossad responded to the release with the 1973 Israeli raid on Lebanon and Operation Wrath of God, tracking down and killing Palestinians suspected of involvement in the Munich massacre.

There have been rumors that Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, who was well-known for his hatred of Israel, had a hand in funding the massacre. However, this has never been proven.