Friday, September 30th 2022   |

Summer Olympics

Palestinian Olympics participation brings conflict to the fore

By BEN SALES

RAMALLAH, West Bank (JTA) — A portrait of the two most prominent Palestinian leaders — current Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and former President Yasser Arafat, who died in 2004 — hangs in the conference room of the Palestinian Olympic Committee headquarters. The background of the portrait is a panorama of the Dome of the Rock in the Old City of Jerusalem, which Israel and the Palestinians both...

America’s Jewish Olympians head to London with pride

By HILLEL KUTLER

BALTIMORE (JTA) – Jason Lezak — no newcomer to Olympic glory — recognizes the difficulty in returning to the medal stand at the London Games. “I definitely would hope to … get onto the podium there and win a medal for the USA,” Lezak, a seven-time Olympic medalist, told JTA on Tuesday from the U.S. swim team’s training camp in France. “With Australia, France and Russia, there’s going...

Vigilant London Jewish community advised to beef up security

By MIRIAM SHAVIV

LONDON (JTA) — Typically on high alert, London’s Jewish community organizations are being advised to take additional security measures during the Olympics. The Community Security Trust, the charity that represents and recommends the community on matters of security, has told Jewish groups to implement or increase patrols around their buildings. CST’s guidelines also remind community groups of basic security steps such as questioning...

Judokas powering Israel’s medal hopes

By BEN SALES

TEL AVIV (JTA) — One is nearing the end of his career, already has an Olympic medal and is eyeing another. The other is a decade younger, an up-and-comer who has enjoyed  some success but is aiming for her first medal at the Games. Ariel “Arik” Ze’evi, 35, and Alice Schlesinger, 24, are standouts on the Israeli Olympic judo team and two of their nation’s best medal...

Peres cancels participation in Olympic Games opening

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli President Shimon Peres canceled his participation in the 2012 Olympic Games in London after failing to find a way to attend the opening ceremony without desecrating the Jewish Sabbath. The opening ceremony begins on a Friday, July 27, before Shabbat starts, but will end well after the onset of the holy day. Though Peres is not religiously observant, he does not publicly desecrate Shabbat.

The President’s...

Israel official thanks Australia for Olympics ‘minute’ support

SYDNEY, Australia (JTA) – Israel’s deputy foreign minister thanked Australia for supporting the campaign to urge the International Olympic Committee to hold a minute’s silence at the London Games in honor of the 11 Israelis murdered in Munich in 1972. Danny Ayalon met earlier this week with Peter Slipper, the speaker of Australia’s Parliament who recently took a leave of absence from his post amid accusations of fraud and sexual...

To London from the U.S. – via Israel’s Olympic team

By BEN SALES

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Growing up outside of Chicago, Jillian Schwartz never expected that one day she would be an Israeli citizen. Now the hardest part of her immigrant experience is leaving Tel Aviv — with her roughly 17-feet-long Olympic equipment. “Trying to get out of here with poles is very difficult,” said Schwartz, a pole vaulter and one of two Americans on Israel’s Olympic team for...

London prepares for Olympics; Munich 11 memories linger

By MIRIAM SHAVIV

LONDON (JTA) — For the British Jewish community, the most memorable moment of the London Olympics may be a somber one. On Aug. 6, several hundred people are expected to attend a commemoration for the 11 Israeli athletes and coaches murdered by Palestinian terrorists during the 1972 Munich Olympics. “From conversations across the community, the key thing people are engaged in around the Olympics is that they...

Munich 11 widow Ankie Spitzer fights for one-minute memorial

By MARLA COHEN

WEST NYACK, N.Y. (JTA) — The room was splashed in blood, the walls riddled with bullet holes. Ankie Spitzer stood amid the chaos and made a vow. “If this is the place where Andrei spent the last hours of his life, he and his friends, I am not going to shut up. I will tell this story,” said Spitzer, whose late husband, Andrei, was the fencing coach...