Gymnast Aly Raisman wins gold, pays tribute to Munich 11
U.S. gymnast Aly Raisman, who is Jewish, followed up her gold medal win in the women’s floor exercise yesterday by paying tribute to the memory of the 11 Israeli athletes killed by Palestinian terrorists at the Munich Olympic Games.
The New York Post:
Raisman finished first in the women’s floor exercise, but she deserves to have another medal draped around her neck for having the chutzpah to face the world and do what needed to be done and say what needed to be said.
At the same Olympic Games where bigoted organizers stubbornly refuse to honor the slain athletes with a moment of silence, 18-year-old Raisman loudly shocked observers first by winning, then by paying her own tribute to 11 sportsmen who died long before she was born.
And if that weren’t enough, she won her event with the Hebrew folk song “Hava Nagila” playing in the background.
“Having that floor music wasn’t intentional,” an emotional but poised Raisman told reporters after her performance.
“But the fact it was on the 40th anniversary is special, and winning the gold today means a lot to me … If there had been a moment’s silence,” the 18-year-old woman told the world, “I would have supported it and respected it.”
American gymnast Aly Raisman has revealed the music for her gold medal-winning floor routine at the London Olympics was a tribute to the victims of the 1972 Munich Games terror attack.
The 18-year-old said choosing Hava Nagila — a traditional score used for wedding dances and bat mitzvah — was a response to the International Olympic Committee’s failure to mark the 40th anniversary of the tragedy.
And for Aly, from Needham, Massachusetts, she said it made her gold even more special.
‘I can only imagine how painful it must be for the families and close personal friends of the victims,’ she said.
Guri Weinberg, son of one of the 11 Israelis murdered at Munich, publicly thanked Raisman for her statement of solidarity:
Many others took to Twitter to thank Raisman for her brave statement:
— Ed Yevelev (@EdYevelev) August 8, 2012
Raisman’s decision to address Munich in her post-win interviews revealed a poised and courageous 18-year-old http://t.co/Enjszhhd
— Jewcy.com (@jewcymag) August 8, 2012
Aly Raisman wins w/Hava Nagila. Love the big eff you to the Olympic organizers for not honoring the Munich tragedy in opening ceremonies
— Philippe Winthrop (@biz_mobility) August 8, 2012
— j. (@thelexicondev) August 8, 2012
— Daniel Solzman (@dsolzman) August 8, 2012
— CUFI (@CUFI) August 8, 2012