In 1972, Palestinian terrorists broke into the Olympic village in Munich, Germany, and held the Israeli Olympic team hostage with the demand that Israel release convicted Arab terrorists from jail. After hours of tense negotiations, the Palestinians and hostages were taken to an airport, where German sharpshooters attempted to kill the terrorists. A bloody firefight ensued, with the resulting loss of 11 Israeli lives. Jewish-American swimmer Mark Spitz, after having won seven gold medals, was whisked away from Munich. The Olympic committee went on with the Games, and subsequent attempts to establish a permanent Olympic memorial to the slain athletes have gone unanswered. Three of the terrorists were captured, but one month later, when Palestinians hijacked a German airplane, German authorities capitulated to their demands and released the Olympic terrorists. They were later eliminated by Israeli agents, the subject of Steven Spielberg's film, Munich.
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