For whom the bell tolls...
Tomorrow marks the five year anniversary of a vicious and hateful attack to our country and countrymen. Instead of doing a timeline of the events that occurred on that day or offering my personal reflections of that day's events (because I have discussed it several time in this forum), I decided to collect data on as many terrorist attacks as I could find that spanned my lifetime (+/-5 years)to obtain a larger more historical picture of those awful events. The information becomes almost repetitive and even mind numbing, but it is critical to have a timeline to understand that the hatred Islamofascists have for us is significant and not fleeting. I have commented on some below.
Attack on the Munich Airport, February 10, 1970: Three terrorists attacked El Al passengers in a bus at the Munich Airport with guns and grenades. One passenger was killed and 11 were injured. All three terrorists were captured by airport police. The Action Organization for the Liberation of Palestine and the Popular Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine claimed responsibility for the attack.
Munich Olympic Massacre, September 5, 1972: Eight Palestinian "Black September" terrorists seized eleven Israeli athletes in the Olympic Village in Munich, West Germany. In a bungled rescue attempt by West German authorities, nine of the hostages and five terrorists were killed.
Ambassador to Sudan Assassinated, March 2, 1973: U.S. Ambassador to Sudan Cleo A. Noel and other diplomats were assassinated at the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Khartoum by members of the Black September organization.
Attack and Hijacking at the Rome Airport, December 17, 1973: Five terrorists pulled weapons from their luggage in the terminal lounge at the Rome airport, killing two persons. They then attacked a Pan American 707 bound for Beirut and Tehran, destroying it with incendiary grenades and killing 29 persons, including 4 senior Moroccan officials and 14 American employees of ARAMCO. They then herded 5 Italian hostages into a Lufthansa airliner and killed an Italian customs agent as he tried to escape, after which they forced the pilot to fly to Beirut. After Lebanese authorities refused to let the plane land, it landed in Athens, where the terrorists demanded the release of 2 Arab terrorists. In order to make Greek authorities comply with their demands, the terrorists killed a hostage and threw his body onto the tarmac. The plane then flew to Damascus, where it stopped for two hours to obtain fuel and food. It then flew to Kuwait, where the terrorists released their hostages in return for passage to an unknown destination. The Palestine Liberation Organization disavowed the attack, and no group claimed responsibility for it.
Ambassador to Afghanistan Assassinated, February 14, 1979: Four Afghans kidnapped U.S. Ambassador Adolph Dubs in Kabul and demanded the release of various "religious figures." Dubs was killed, along with four alleged terrorists, when Afghan police stormed the hotel room where he was being held.
Iran Hostage Crisis, November 4, 1979: After President Carter agreed to admit the Shah of Iran into the US, Iranian radicals seized the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and took 66 American diplomats hostage. Thirteen hostages were soon released, but the remaining 53 were held until their release on January 20, 1981.
- this act of terrorism gave us Ted Koppel and Nightline.
Grand Mosque Seizure, November 20, 1979: 200 Islamic terrorists seized the Grand Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, taking hundreds of pilgrims hostage. Saudi and French security forces retook the shrine after an intense battle in which some 250 people were killed and 600 wounded.
Bombing of U.S. Embassy in Beirut, April 18, 1983: Sixty-three people, including the CIA's Middle East director, were killed and 120 were injured in a 400-pound suicide truck-bomb attack on the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. The Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility. - I was about to graduate from high school when this happened. I had just turned 18. I can't recall any of my classmates enlisting in the military - everyone was going on to college or a tech school or straight into a job. Earlier that year I had discussed with my family, including my uncle that I thought joining the Marines might be an option for me. Uncle Steve and everyone else all said... no way. Uncle Steve at the time was a recruiter for the Marines. He retired as a master gunnery sergeant. (a true ramble)
Bombing of Marine Barracks, Beirut, October 23, 1983:Simultaneous suicide truck-bomb attacks were made on American and French compounds in Beirut, Lebanon. A 12,000-pound bomb destroyed the U.S. compound, killing 242 Americans, while 58 French troops were killed when a 400-pound device destroyed a French base. Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility. - I didn't get it. I didn't understand the significance, the symbolism. There was a civil war going on, but who cared? Right?
Kidnapping of Embassy Official, March 16, 1984: The Islamic Jihad kidnapped and later murdered Political Officer William Buckley in Beirut, Lebanon. Other U.S. citizens not connected to the U.S. government were seized over a succeeding two-year period.
TWA Hijacking, June 14, 1985: A Trans-World Airlines flight was hijacked en route to Rome from Athens by two Lebanese Hizballah terrorists and forced to fly to Beirut. The eight crew members and 145 passengers were held for seventeen days, during which one American hostage, a U.S. Navy sailor, was murdered. After being flown twice to Algiers, the aircraft was returned to Beirut after Israel released 435 Lebanese and Palestinian prisoners.
- The images of the pilot with a gun to his head calmly answering questions on the evening news will be burned in my mind for the rest of my life. - Robert Stethem was tortured and murdered and thrown from this plane. His body was so badly broken and ruined that he could not be identified. It took fingerprints to confirm that this young man- this young United States Sailor was indeed Robert Stethem. One of his murderers was Mohammed Ali Hammadi. You may recall that Hammadi was released from prison in Germany...what... for good behavior?!
Air India Bombing, June 23, 1985: A bomb destroyed an Air India Boeing 747 over the Atlantic, killing all 329 people aboard. Both Sikh and Kashmiri terrorists were blamed for the attack. Two cargo handlers were killed at Tokyo airport, Japan, when another Sikh bomb exploded in an Air Canada aircraft en route to India.
Soviet Diplomats Kidnapped, September 30, 1985: In Beirut, Lebanon, Sunni terrorists kidnapped four Soviet diplomats. One was killed but three were later released.
Achille Lauro Hijacking, October 7, 1985: Four Palestinian Liberation Front terrorists seized the Italian cruise liner in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, taking more than 700 hostages. One U.S. passenger was murdered before the Egyptian government offered the terrorists safe haven in return for the hostagesâ€™ freedom.
- This attack inflames me. Leon Klinghoffer an American Jew on holiday with his wife celebrating their 36th wedding anniversary was singled out. The man was confined to a wheel chair. He was shot in the forehead at point blank range. He was shot in the chest just to make sure and then Leon and his wheelchair were dumped over the side of the ship. His murderer Abu Abbas was was captured in Iraq in 2003 by American forces while he was trying to flee to safety. Italy wanted him bad, but he died of natural causes while in American custody.
Egyptian Airliner Hijacking, November 23, 1985: An EgyptAir airplane bound from Athens to Malta and carrying several U.S. citizens was hijacked by the Abu Nidal Group.
Airport Attacks in Rome and Vienna, December 27, 1985: Four gunmen belonging to the Abu Nidal Organization attacked the El Al and Trans World Airlines ticket counters at Rome's Leonardo da Vinci Airport with grenades and automatic rifles. Thirteen persons were killed and 75 were wounded before Italian police and Israeli security guards killed three of the gunmen and captured the fourth. Three more Abu Nidal gunmen attacked the El Al ticket counter at Vienna's Schwechat Airport, killing three persons and wounding 30. Austrian police killed one of the gunmen and captured the others.
Aircraft Bombing in Greece, March 30, 1986: A Palestinian splinter group detonated a bomb as TWA Flight 840 approached Athens airport, killing four U.S. citizens.
Berlin Discoteque Bombing, April 5, 1986: Two U.S. soldiers were killed and 79 American servicemen were injured in a Libyan bomb attack on a nightclub in West Berlin, West Germany. In retaliation U.S. military jets bombed targets in and around Tripoli and Benghazi.
Kidnapping of William Higgins, February 17, 1988: U.S. Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel W. Higgins was kidnapped and murdered by the Iranian-backed Hizballah group while serving with the United Nations Truce Supervisory Organization (UNTSO) in southern Lebanon.
Naples USO Attack, April 14, 1988: The Organization of Jihad Brigades exploded a car-bomb outside a USO Club in Naples, Italy, killing one U.S. sailor.
Pan Am 103 Bombing, December 21, 1988: Pan American Airlines Flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland, by a bomb believed to have been placed on the aircraft by Libyan terrorists in Frankfurt, West Germany. All 259 people on board were killed.
Bombing of UTA Flight 772, September 19, 1989: A bomb explosion destroyed UTA Flight 772 over the Sahara Desert in southern Niger during a flight from Brazzaville to Paris. All 170 persons aboard were killed. Six Libyans were later found guilty in absentia and sentenced to life imprisonment.
Bombing of the Israeli Embassy in Argentina, March 17, 1992: Hizballah claimed responsibility for a blast that leveled the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina, causing the deaths of 29 and wounding 242.
World Trade Center Bombing, February 26, 1993: The World Trade Center in New York City was badly damaged when a car bomb planted by Islamic terrorists exploded in an underground garage. The bomb left 6 people dead and 1,000 injured. The men carrying out the attack were followers of Umar Abd al-Rahman, an Egyptian cleric who preached in the New York City area.
Attempted Assassination of President Bush by Iraqi Agents, April 14, 1993: The Iraqi intelligence service attempted to assassinate former U.S. President George Bush during a visit to Kuwait. In retaliation, the U.S. launched a cruise missile attack 2 months later on the Iraqi capital Baghdad.
Kashmiri Hostage-taking, July 4, 1995: In India six foreigners, including two U.S. citizens, were taken hostage by Al-Faran, a Kashmiri separatist group. One non-U.S. hostage was later found beheaded.
Jerusalem Bus Attack, August 21, 1995: HAMAS claimed responsibility for the detonation of a bomb that killed 6 and injured over 100 persons, including several U.S. citizens.
Saudi Military Installation Attack, November 13, 1995: The Islamic Movement of Change planted a bomb in a Riyadh military compound that killed one U.S. citizen, several foreign national employees of the U.S. government, and over 40 others.
Egyptian Embassy Attack, November 19, 1995: A suicide bomber drove a vehicle into the Egyptian Embassy compound in Islamabad, Pakistan, killing at least 16 and injuring 60 persons. Three militant Islamic groups claimed responsibility
HAMAS Bus Attack, February 26, 1996: In Jerusalem, a suicide bomber blew up a bus, killing 26 persons, including three U.S. citizens, and injuring some 80 persons, including three other US citizens.
Dizengoff Center Bombing, March 4, 1996: HAMAS and the Palestine Islamic Jihad (PIJ) both claimed responsibility for a bombing outside of Tel Aviv's largest shopping mall that killed 20 persons and injured 75 others, including 2 U.S. citizens.
West Bank Attack, May 13, 1996: Arab gunmen opened fire on a bus and a group of Yeshiva students near the Bet El settlement, killing a dual U.S./Israeli citizen and wounding three Israelis. No one claimed responsibility for the attack, but HAMAS was suspected
Empire State Building Sniper Attack, February 23, 1997: A Palestinian gunman opened fire on tourists at an observation deck atop the Empire State Building in New York City, killing a Danish national and wounding visitors from the United States, Argentina, Switzerland, and France before turning the gun on himself. A handwritten note carried by the gunman claimed this was a punishment attack against the "enemies of Palestine."
- I do not remember this. Shame on me.
Israeli Shopping Mall Bombing, September 4, 1997: Three suicide bombers of HAMAS detonated bombs in the Ben Yehuda shopping mall in Jerusalem, killing eight persons, including the bombers, and wounding nearly 200 others. A dual U.S./Israeli citizen was among the dead, and 7 U.S. citizens were wounded.
Murder of U.S. Businessmen in Pakistan, November 12, 1997: Two unidentified gunmen shot to death four U.S. auditors from Union Texas Petroleum Corporation and their Pakistani driver after they drove away from the Sheraton Hotel in Karachi. The Islami Inqilabi Council, or Islamic Revolutionary Council, claimed responsibility in a call to the U.S. Consulate in Karachi. In a letter to Pakistani newspapers, the Aimal Khufia Action Committee also claimed responsibility.
Tourist Killings in Egypt, November 17, 1997: Al-Gama'at al-Islamiyya (IG) gunmen shot and killed 58 tourists and four Egyptians and wounded 26 others at the Hatshepsut Temple in the Valley of the Kings near Luxor. Thirty-four Swiss, eight Japanese, five Germans, four Britons, one French, one Colombian, a dual Bulgarian/British citizen, and four unidentified persons were among the dead. Twelve Swiss, two Japanese, two Germans, one French, and nine Egyptians were among the wounded
Attack on U.S.S. Cole, October 12, 2000: In Aden, Yemen, a small dingy carrying explosives rammed the destroyer U.S.S. Cole, killing 17 sailors and injuring 39 others. Supporters of Usama Bin Laden were suspected.
- Because of my job - I think about this every single solitary day...
Bus Stop Bombing, April 22, 2001: A member of HAMAS detonated a bomb he was carrying near a bus stop in Kfar Siva, Israel, killing one person and injuring 60.
Philippines Hostage Incident, May 27, 2001: Muslim Abu Sayyaf guerrillas seized 13 tourists and 3 staff members at a resort on Palawan Island and took their captives to Basilan Island. The captives included three U.S. citizens: Guellermo Sobero and missionaries Martin and Gracia Burnham. Philippine troops fought a series of battles with the guerrillas between June 1 and June 3 during which 9 hostages escaped and two were found dead. The guerrillas took additional hostages when they seized the hospital in the town of Lamitan. On June 12, Abu Sayyaf spokesman Abu Sabaya claimed that Sobero had been killed and beheaded; his body was found in October. The Burnhams remained in captivity until June 2002.
Tel-Aviv Nightclub Bombing, June 1, 2001: HAMAS claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing of a popular Israeli nightclub that caused over 140 casualties.
HAMAS Restaurant Bombing, August 9, 2001: A HAMAS-planted bomb detonated in a Jerusalem pizza restaurant, killing 15 people and wounding more than 90. The Israeli response included occupation of Orient House, the Palestine Liberation Organization's political headquarters in East Jerusalem.
Suicide Bombing in Israel, September 9, 2001: The first suicide bombing carried out by an Israeli Arab killed 3 persons in Nahariya. HAMAS claimed responsibility.
Death of "the Lion of the Panjshir", September 9, 2001: Two suicide bombers fatally wounded Ahmed Shah Massoud, a leader of Afghanistan's Northern Alliance, which had opposed both the Soviet occupation and the post-Soviet Taliban government. The bombers posed as journalists and were apparently linked to al-Qaida. The Northern Alliance did not confirm Massoud's death until September 15.
Terrorist Attacks on U.S. Homeland, September 11, 2001: Two hijacked airliners crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center. Soon thereafter, the Pentagon was struck by a third hijacked plane. A fourth hijacked plane, suspected to be bound for a high-profile target in Washington, crashed into a field in southern Pennsylvania. The attacks killed 3,025 U.S. citizens and other nationals. President Bush and Cabinet officials indicated that Usama Bin Laden was the prime suspect and that they considered the United States in a state of war with international terrorism. In the aftermath of the attacks, the United States formed the Global Coalition Against Terrorism.
... and we know terrorism has not stopped.... it continues and we must be vigilant. We must not forget. We must not put our heads in the sand. We must demand that our elected officials stop playing politics. This isn't a game. The common thread in all the attacks is that there is a deep seeded hatred for us.
According to them, we must submit or die. That is their goal- it is just that simple.
...America - What is our goal? I hope it is live free or die...
All preceding information is an incomplete sampling of terrorist activity pulled directly from: U.S. Department of State - Significant Terrorist Incidents, 1961-2003: A Brief Chronology
Religion of Peace
List of Current Terrorist Organizations ** please note: many of the "old" organizations have morphed or simply changed their name.
FBI's Most Wanted Terrorists!
Sunny - Hi 112 Lo 82 for Baghdad, Iraq
Partly Cloudy - Hi 79 Lo 61 for Northern KY, USA
Song of the week: For Whom The Bell Tolls, Metallica
...it tolls for thee.
Update: 30 September, 2006
I have received a positive response as well as many hits from Google and Yahoo searches on this blog entry. So, as I continue to research this topic, I will add links to the bottom of this post to keep everything organized and easy to find. I have also added a tab, Terrorism, at the top of my blog for easy access. Please let me know if you are interested in a specific terrorist organization and I will do my best to research and document my findings.
Part Two A: The Muslim Brotherhood - 9/24/06 a brief history on this old terrorist organization as well as some insight into the current voice of this group.