Israel's Munich archives opened

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The instructions from the Israeli government were clear in the hours after Palestinian terrorists killed two Israeli athletes at the Munich Summer Olympics in 1972, took nine others hostage and demanded the release of more than 200 Arab prisoners.

“The Israeli government does not negotiate with terrorists,” read the urgent cable, marked classified and sent to the Israeli ambassador in Bonn, the capital of what was then West Germany, on Sept. 5, 1972. “The government expects the German authorities to do everything in their power to rescue the hostages.”…

Now for the first time, these and dozens more classified documents relating to the killing of the athletes have been made public after four decades left sitting in cardboard boxes in the Israel State Archives, the repository of the country’s collective memory and many of its secrets. Their publication last week was timed to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the Munich massacre.

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