9/11 Families Send Letter To LIV Golf US Players

The players have been accused of sportswashing and faced calls from the 9/11 Familes United group for their Ryder Cup bans to be maintained

Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson are among the American golfers who have drawn the outrage of the 9/11 Families United group after signing with LIV Golf
(Image credit: Getty Images)

 

A prominent 9/11 survivors group has sent a letter to representatives of Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Reed and Kevin Na expressing their anger, outrage and disappointment at their decision to join the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series.

The 9/11 Families United group accused the five American golfers of “betrayal, not only of us, but of all your countrymen” and called it “absurd” to hope for rules exceptions to allow them to represent the USA in the Ryder Cup, calling on them to rethink their decision to sign with LIV Golf.

Nearly 3,000 people lost their lives on Septemer 11th, 2001 in the terrorist attack which saw planes flown into the side of the towers of New York’s World Trade Center. Terry Strada, National Chair of the 10,000-strong 9/11 Families United group, lost her husband Tom in the attack.

She emailed representatives of the five American golfers to remind them of the significance Saudi Arabia, where most of the terrorists hailed from, played that day, saying: “Perhaps you were unaware of the Saudi role in September 11. Or if you were, perhaps you thought nobody would care, nearly 21 years later. Either way, you were mistaken.” The full letter can be read on the 9/11 Families United website here.

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan, who last week announced all current and future LIV Golf players are banned from the PGA Tour, addressed the 9/11 Families United letter in an interview with CBS’ Jim Nantz, saying, “"my heart goes out to them.”  

In the first LIV Golf Series event at Centurion last week, South African Charl Schwartzel took home $4.75million for winning the 48-runner event and also being part of the triumphant winning 4-man team, Stinger GC. He stated afterwards that he “never looked at where the money has come from”. The players are allowed to compete in this week’s US Open, with the next LIV Golf event starting on June 30th at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in Portland, Oregon.

Jeff Kimber
Jeff Kimber

Jeff graduated from Leeds University in Business Studies and Media in 1996 and did a post grad in journalism at Sheffield College in 1997. His first jobs were on Slam Dunk (basketball) and Football Monthly magazines, and he's worked for the Sunday Times, Press Association and ESPN. He has faced golfing greats Sam Torrance and Sergio Garcia, but on the poker felt rather than the golf course. Jeff's favourite course played is Sandy Lane in Barbados, which went far better than when he played Matfen Hall in Northumberland, where he crashed the buggy on the way to the 1st tee!