Involved in: Aid for terrorists, Training grounds;
Profit: Damage on domestic democracy, Keep the citizens under fear;
Providing for Terrorists: Ground, Funds,Camps, Arms;
- Patrice Alberti Operating Scheme
- Hezbollah and the Lebanese Customs
- Hezbollah financial network in West Africa
- Hezbollah companies in Lebanon
Terrorist organizations operating in Lebanon include the radical Shiite militia Hezbollah, several Palestinian groups-Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command-as well as the Abu Nidal Organization, al-Jihad, Asbat al-Ansar, the Japanese Red Army, and some local radical Sunni Muslim organizations.
Another militant group, Fatah al-Islam, which surfaced in 2006, has become one of the country’s main security threats and was involved in a deadly clash with Lebanese troops in May 2007. Moreover, since the end of its devastating fifteen year civil war in 1990, Lebanon-a tiny, mountainous Arab state bordered by Israel, Syria, and the Mediterranean Sea-had, until 2005, been largely controlled by Syria, a state sponsor of terrorism.
Hezbollah, which operates with the approval of Syria and receives massive weapons shipments and military training from its founders in Iran. It is based principally in Beirut, and effectively controls Lebanon’s Shiite-dominated south, and the Bekaa Valley, allowing terrorists to move around these regions with relative impunity. U.S. officials have urged Lebanon and Syria to rein in the group. In July 2006, Hezbollah attacks on northern Israel, including the abduction of two Israeli soldiers at a border station, provoked a massive Israeli military response.
Hezbollah responded by launching rockets into northern Israel. The violence came on the heels of an escalation in the Israeli-Palestinian crisis in Gaza Strip. Israel’s response put pressure on the Lebanese government, highlighting both the conflicting interests of Hezbollah and Lebanon, and Lebanon’s inability to disarm the group.
Hezbollah is also an effective political party in Lebanon and holds twenty-three of the 128 seats in the Lebanese parliament. Since 2000, when it successfully drove Israeli troops from a forty kilometer “security zone” in southern Lebanon after twenty-two years of occupation, Hezbollah has increasingly asserted its influence among Lebanon’s Shiite Muslims-the country’s largest religious group-by establishing social programs, hospitals, and schools.
After gaining independence from French control in 1944, Lebanon grew into a thriving trade and financial center, and its political system—based on power-sharing among religious groups-was hailed as a model of multiethnic cooperation. But in 1975, a civil war broke out between Lebanon’s Muslim majority and its ruling Maronite Christian elite that left the country vulnerable to manipulation by neighboring states and terrorist groups.
Many Syrians have long considered Lebanon rightfully part of “greater Syria,” and in 1976, the Arab League supported a Syrian military intervention after attempts by Western and Arab countries to mediate Lebanon’s civil war failed. Tens of thousands of Syrian troops marched into Lebanon and eventually joined the Sunni-Palestinian coalition in its fight against the Maronite Christians. In 1991, Syria’s control of Lebanon was cemented by the Treaty of Brotherhood, Cooperation, and Coordination, which lasted until the Syrians withdrew their troops from Lebanon in 2005.
During the 1980s, Hezbollah repeatedly targeted Americans. In 1983 and 1984, more than 250 Americans were killed in suicide bombing attacks on a U.S. Marine barracks, the U.S. embassy, and the U.S. embassy annex in Lebanon. A U.S. Navy diver was shot during the 1985 terrorist hijacking of TWA flight 847 in Beirut, and terrorists kidnapped and held hostage several Americans in Lebanon during the 1980s.
These attacks came after the United States sent troops to Lebanon in 1982 in an attempt to quiet tensions following the Israeli invasion and to help promote nation-building. Hezbollah was blamed for carrying out the attacks under the direction of its sponsor, the Islamist, anti-American Iranian regime led by the Ayatollah Khomeini. Following the 1983-84 suicide bombings, the Reagan administration withdrew U.S. troops from Lebanon.
Armed Palestinian groups began launching attacks against Israel from Lebanon following the Six-Day War in 1967. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians live in refugee camps in Lebanon, and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) based itself in the country after being expelled from Jordan in 1970.
The outbreak of Lebanon’s civil war in 1975 caused the number of armed groups operating in the country to skyrocket. Among them was a radical Shiite militia called the Lebanese Resistance Detachments (known by its Arabic acronym, Amal), which forged an alliance with Khomeini’s Shiite regime after Khomeini came to power through the 1979 Iranian revolution. In 1982, Iran created the Hezbollah militia to fight Israeli forces, which had invaded Lebanon to destroy the PLO’s Lebanese base and install a pro-Israel Maronite regime in Beirut.
The Lebanese government has cooperated in some international counterterrorism measures and has arrested al-Qaeda members. But it backed Hezbollah’s 1990s attacks on Israel and refuses to interfere with the group’s ongoing attacks against Israeli troops in the disputed border region known as Shebaa Farms. (Lebanon considers Shebaa Farms to be Lebanese territory under Israeli occupation, but the United Nations considers it to be a part of Syria and says that Israel has withdrawn completely from Lebanon.)
Lebanon has also refused U.S.demands to turn over Lebanese terrorists involved in the 1985 hijacking of TWA flight 847 and in the abduction, torture, and murder of U.S. hostages from 1984 to 1991. At the same time, the regime has only limited influence over Hezbollah and Palestinian militants. Moreover, it lacks control of some of Beirut and of the lawless, drug-ridden Bekaa Valley, as well as of many Palestinian refugee camps and the southern border region.
Campaign of violence
Starting in 2004, a series of bombings and assassinations struck Lebanon, most of them in and around the capital, Beirut. This wave of bombings began with the assassination attempt on Marwan Hamadeh, then became more intense with the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri on February 14, 2005, which touched off the Cedar Revolution and the withdrawal of Syrian troops. After the massive protests following Hariri’s killing, several more bombings hit Lebanon.
These bombings and assassinations came after September 2004, when the Lebanese Parliament was pressured by Syria to extend the term of pro-Syrian President Emile Lahoud through a constitutional amendment. The MPs, journalists, and activists that opposed this term extension were subject to slander, harassment and, in many cases, assassination attempts. Since 2013 most of the bombings were not related to the Cedar Revolution but rather a spillover of the Syrian civil war.
This list is limited to bombings and assassinations; it does not include other form of attacks. It is presented in chronological order. All entries must be cited or have their own article.
-Marwan Hamadeh assassination attempt (October 1) – A car bomb exploded next to the motorcade carrying Druze MP Marwan Hamadeh. Hamadeh was injured, but survived; his driver was killed. Hamadeh was a critic of Syria and a member of the opposition to President Émile Lahoud.
-Rafiq Hariri assassination (February 14) – A massive explosion killed former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri in Beirut, near the St. George Hotel. The former Minister of the Economy, Bassel Fleihan, was also among the 22 killed. About 220 others were wounded. A group calling itself “Al Nusra and Jihad in greater Syria” claimed responsibility for the blast. According to the UN report, released October 20, the blast was the result of a truck bomb. Security video had captured a white truck driving near Hariri’s convoy which investigators determined was carrying an estimated 1,000 kg of explosives. Since Hariri’s convoy had jamming devices meant to block remote control signals, the attack was carried out using a suicide bomber. The report cited a witness who said the bomber was an Iraqi who was led to believe his target was Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi, who had been in Beirut just days before. The report concluded that top Syrian and Lebanese officials planned the assassination beginning in mid-2004.
-New Jdeideh bombing (March 19) – A car bomb exploded in the New Jdeideh suburb of Beirut. The blast happened in a mixed commercial-residential area and wounded 11 people. Reports said that the driver had tried to park in front of a bingo hall and was turned away, so he instead parked next to an apartment.
-Kaslik bombing (March 23) – A bomb left in a leather bag exploded at the back entrance of the Kaslik shopping center in Jounieh. Two Indian and one Pakistani janitor were killed, and two Sri Lankans and two Lebanese injured. The roof of the mall collapsed.
-Sad el-Bouchrieh bombing (March 26) – A car bomb parked between two factories exploded in the Sad el-Bouchrieh area of Beirut, wounding 6 people. It caused a blaze which destroyed several workshops.
-Broummana bombing (April 1) – A bomb ripped through the Rizk plaza in the Broummana resort village, 20 km (12 mi) east of Beirut. 12 people were injured.
-Jounieh bombing (May 7) – A car bomb exploded between the Christian Sawt al Mahaba radio station and the Mar Yuhanna Church in Jounieh. The radio station was destroyed and the church suffered major damage. 22 people were wounded.
-Samir Kassir assassination (June 2) – Anti-Syrian journalist Samir Kassir was assassinated when a bomb detonated in his car outside his home in Beirut’s Ashrafiyeh district, a largely Christian residential area. Kassir was a front-page columnist for the al-Nahar newspaper, where he wrote columns criticizing the pro-Syrian government.
-George Hawi assassination (June 21) – Former Lebanese Communist Party leader George Hawi, a critic of Syria, died when his car exploded as he was driving through Beirut’s Wata Musaitbi district.
-Elias Murr assassination attempt (July 12) – A car bomb wounded the outgoing Lebanese defense minister, Elias Murr, as his motorcade drove through Beirut’s Christian suburb of Antelias. 2 people were killed and 12 others injured. This attack was unique in the series of bombings in that Murr was considered a pro-Syrian figure.
-Monot bombing (July 22) – A bomb exploded in a car parked in front of a restaurant on Monot Street in Beirut, wounding 12 people. The bomb was estimated to be 23 kg (50 lb).
-Zalka bombing (August 22) – In the mostly Christian neighborhood of Zalka a bomb placed between a shopping center and a hotel damaged shops and windows, wounding 8 people. It consisted of 20 to 30 kg (44 to 66 lb) of TNT and was set on a timer.
-Jeitawi bombing (September 17) – An explosion in the largely Christian area of Ashrafieh killed 1 person and injured 23 others. It was believed to have been caused by a car bomb; two cars were destroyed and buildings near the blast were severely damaged.
-May Chidiac assassination attempt (September 25) – Christian journalist and critic of Syria May Chidiac was seriously injured when a bomb exploded as she got into her car in Jounieh. She lost her left leg and arm. Chidiac was an anchor on the Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation.
-Gebran Tueni assassination (December 12) – A prominent anti-Syrian journalist and lawmaker, Gebran Tueni, was killed by a car bomb. He had returned from France only a day earlier, where he had been staying for fear of assassination. His driver and a passerby were also killed when a car bomb exploded as his motorcade drove through Mkalles, an industrial suburb of Beirut. 3 people were killed and another 30 wounded in the bombing, and at least 10 vehicles were destroyed. The December 28 An Nahar reported that the group “The Strugglers for the Unity and Freedom in al Sham” had claimed responsibility for the bombing in a statement which said outgoing UNIIIC chairman Detlev Mehlis was lucky to escape death and threatened any new chairman with assassination if he too implicated Syria.
-Mahmoud al Majzoub assassination (May 25) – A bomb killed Mahmoud al Majzoub, the leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, in Sidon, south of Lebanon.
-Pierre Amine Gemayel assassination (November 21) – Anti-Syrian Minister of Industry Pierre Amine Gemayel, son of Kataeb leader Amin Gemayel and nephew of assassinated President Bashir Gemayyel, was shot dead in Beirut.
-Bikfaya bombing (February 13) – A bomb on a bus near Bikfaya killed 3 people and wounded 21 others.
-ABC bombing (May 20) – Explosives placed near the ABC mall in Achrafieh killed 1 civilian and wounded 18 others.
-Verdun bombing (May 21) – An explosion in the affluent Beirut district of Verdun injured 10 people including 2 children.
-Aley bombing (May 23) – An explosion in the town of Aley wounded 5 people.
-Walid Eido assassination (June 13) – Walid Eido, an anti-Syrian MP, was killed by a car bomb in Beirut along with 8 others, including his eldest son Khaled Eido.
-Antoine Ghanem assassination (September 19) – Anti-Syrian Lebanese MP Antoine Ghanem and four others were killed in a car bomb attack in a Christian suburb of Beirut.
-Francois Elias Hajj assassination (December 12) – Brigadier General François al-Hajj, from the village of Rmaich, was among 4 killed in a car bomb attack in Baabda.
-US diplomat bombing (January 15) – A bomb targeted against a US diplomatic vehicle killed 4 Lebanese civilians and wounded 16 others.
-Wissam Eid assassination (January 25) – Capt. Wissam Eid, Lebanese Internal Security Forces senior terrorism investigator, was assassinated. At the time of the attack, Eid was also the top Lebanese investigator into the assassination of Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri.
-Tripoli bus bombing (August 13) – A bomb targeting a civilian bus in Tripoli killed 16 people, including 7 Lebanese soldiers.
-Saleh Aridi assassination (September 10) – Saleh Aridi, a pro-Syrian Druze politician of the Lebanese Democratic Party, was killed by a car bomb.
-Tripoli car bomb (September 29) – A car bomb destroyed a bus in Tripoli, killing 5 soldiers and injuring 35 others.
-Wissam al Hassan assassination (October 19) – Head of the intelligence branch of the Internal Security Forces (ISF) Maj. Gen. Wissam al-Hassan was killed by a massive car bomb in Achrafieh. 128 were injured and 8 others died.
-Roueiss bombing (August 15) – An attack on the Roueiss neighborhood in south Beirut killed 27 people and injured over 300. The attack was believed to have been carried out through a car bomb. Similar to the Beir el-Abed bombing, this attack targeted a Hizbollah stronghold.
-Tripoli dual bombings (August 23) – Bombs hit two mosques killing at least 42 people and wounding hundreds. The first explosion hit the Taqwa mosque, and killed at least 14 people there. Further deaths were reported from a second blast a few minutes later outside the al-Salam mosque, which the Interior Ministry said was hit by a car laden with 100 kg (220 lbs) of explosives.
-Beir Hassan bombing (November 19) – A large explosion near an Iranian cultural center in the southern suburbs of Beirut killed at least 22 people and injured 146 others in a double bomb attack. The explosion appeared to have been caused by a car bomb and a motorcycle laden with explosives.
-Hassan Lakkis assassination (December 3) – A senior Hezbollah commander named Hassan Lakkis was assassinated by two gunmen in Beirut.
-Mohamad Chatah assassination (December 27) – Former-minister Mohamad Chatah, member of the Future Movement, and 5 others were killed by a car bomb that targeted Chatah’s vehicle. Approximately 70 people were wounded in the attack.
-Haret Hreik bombing (January 2) – Explosives were detonated in front of the political office of Hizbollah, killing 4 and injuring 77 others. Several buildings were damaged and flames engulfed vehicles parked on Al-Arid Street, where the explosives-rigged vehicle had been parked.
-1st Hermel bombing (January 16) – A suspected suicide car-bombing killed 5 people and wounded 42 others in a bustling neighborhood in the northeastern town of Hermel.
-2nd Hermel bombing (February 1) – Another terrorist explosion targeted Hermel, killing 4 and injuring 23 civilians in an attack that was claimed by an Al-Qaeda-linked group. The suicide bomber drove a Grand Cherokee Jeep up to a petrol station in the Zahraa area of the city where he then detonated a car bomb.
-Van bombing (February 3) – A suicide bombing injured 2 people south of Beirut.
-Iranian cultural center bombings (February 19) – Two suicide bombings killed 8 people and wounded 128 others near the Iranian cultural center in Beirut.
-3rd Hermel bombing (February 22) – A suicide car bombing targeting an army post in Hermel killed 3 people including 2 soldiers and wounded 17 others. The Lebanon branch of the Nusra Front, a radical Syrian rebel force, claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing, saying it was part of a “series of vengeful attacks”.
-Arsal bombing (March 29) – A suicide car bomb killed 3 Lebanese soldiers and wounded 4 others in the northeastern town of Arsal.
-Dahr al Baidar bombing (June 20) – A suicide bomber killed a police officer and wounded 32 people at a checkpoint in east Lebanon.
-Beirut cafe bombing (June 24) – A suicide bomber driving an old Mercedes wounded 12 people near a cafe and a military checkpoint in Beirut.
-Duroy Hotel bombing (June 27) – A suicide bomber wounded 11 people in a Beirut hotel. Security forces attempted to arrest him before the explosion.
-Tripoli bomb (August 6) – A homemade bomb killed 1 civilian and wounded 10 others near an army checkpoint in Tripoli.
-Hezbollah bombing (September 20) – A bombing targeted a Hezbollah checkpoint in eastern Lebanon. The number of casualties is disputed.
-3rd Arsal bombing (November 14) – A bomb wounded 3 soldiers in Arsal.
-4th Arsal bombing (December 3) – Another bomb in Arsal killed 1 soldier and wounded 2 others.
-Jabal Mohsen cafe bombing (January 10) – A double suicide-bombing in Tripoli killed 9 people and injured at least 50 others.
-Ghassan Ajaj assassination (January 26) – An intelligence officer was assassinated by a gunman in northern Lebanon.
-Bader Eid assassination (March 2) – The brother of Alawite leader Ali Eid was assassinated in northern Lebanon.
-Second Hezbollah bombing (October 5) – A bombing targeted a bus transporting Hezbollah fighters to Syria. The number of casualties could not be determined.
-5th Arsal bombing (November 5) – A bombing killed at least 5 people and wounded 15 others in the eastern town of Arsal.
-6th Arsal bombing (November 6) – A blast wounded 5 Lebanese soldiers in Arsal.
-Bourj el-Barajneh bombing (November 12) – Two suicide bombers killed 89 people and wounded more than 200 in the southern Beirut suburb of Bourj el-Barajneh, a Hezbollah stronghold.
-Deir Ammar bombing (December 5) – A suicide bomber killed 3 people and wounded 6 others during an army raid in North Lebanon.
-7th Arsal bombing (March 24) – A roadside bomb killed a Lebanese soldier and wounded 3 others in Arsal.
-Fathi Zaydan assassination (April 12) – An explosion killed Fathi Zaydan, a Fatah senior officer near the main Palestinian camp in South Lebanon.
-Blom Bank bombing (June 12) – An explosion caused material damage outside a branch of the biggest bank in Lebanon.
-Qaa Bombings (June 27) – Several suicide bombings killed at least 5 people and wounded more than 12 in the eastern village of Al Qaa. Security officials believe Islamic State militants were behind the attack although no one claimed responsibility.
-8th Arsal bombing (August 15) – A bomb wounded 5 soldiers in the eastern village of Arsal.
-Zahle bombing (August 31) – A bomb killed 1 person and injured several others in the eastern city of Zahle.
-Al Ain (December 28) – A small explosion killed the deputy mayor of Al Ain, a town in northeastern Lebanon.
-Mohammad Hamdan attempted assassination (January 14) – A car bomb injured a Hamas official in the southern city of Saida.