Maccabiah Games May Be Postponed Due to Terrorism -- June 6, 2001
By Phillip Whitten
PHILADELPHIA, June 6. THE 16th World Maccabiah Games may be postponed due to the threat of Palestinian terrorism, swiminfo has learned. The Games - often referred to as the "Jewish Olympics" - are scheduled to take place in Tel Aviv next month.
Over the years, the Maccabiah Games have featured such Olympic greats as swimmer Mark Spitz and gymnast Mitch Gaylord. America's Lenny Krayzelburg, a triple Olympic gold medalist in Sydney last year, is scheduled to compete in Israel this summer.
The US Committee Sports for Israel/Maccabi USA is urging the Maccabi World Union - the event's governing body - to postpone the event due to the terrorist threat. A delegation from the US, which fields the largest team outside of the host Israelis, will meet with Maccabi World Union officials in Israel this weekend and announce the results of that meeting next Monday, June 11. Some 600 athletes have been selected to represent the USA at the Games this summer.
In a letter sent on June 4 to US Maccabiah Games athletes, Bob Spivak, president of Maccabi USA/Sports for Israel, said: "We are all deeply saddened and outraged by the continued tragic loss of life and injuries suffered by our fellow Jews in Israel. As always, we stand united with our brothers and sisters in Israel during this very difficult time."