Portal:Terrorism/Selected article

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Selected articles list[edit]

Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/1

Flight 93 crash site

United Airlines Flight 93 was a scheduled U.S. domestic passenger flight from Newark International Airport, in Newark, New Jersey, to San Francisco International Airport. It was hijacked in 2001 by four men as part of the September 11 attacks. Over 40 minutes into the flight the hijackers breached the cockpit, overpowered the pilots and took over control of the aircraft, diverting it toward Washington, D.C. Several passengers and crew members made telephone calls aboard the flight and learned about the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. As a result, the passengers decided to mount an assault against the hijackers and wrest control of the aircraft. The plane crashed in a field just outside Shanksville, Pennsylvania, about 150 miles (240 km) northwest of Washington, D.C., killing all 44 people aboard, including the hijackers. The plane fragmented upon impact, leaving a crater, and some debris was blown miles from the crash site. The remains of everyone on board the aircraft were later identified. Subsequent analysis of the flight recorders revealed how the actions taken by the passengers prevented the aircraft from reaching either the White House or United States Capitol. A permanent memorial is planned for construction on the crash site. The chosen design has been the subject of criticism and is scheduled to be dedicated in 2011.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/2

The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building two days after the bombing

The Oklahoma City bombing occurred on April 19, 1995 when American militia movement sympathizer Timothy McVeigh, with the assistance of Terry Nichols, destroyed the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It was the most significant act of terrorism on American soil until the September 11 attacks in 2001, claiming the lives of 168 victims and injuring more than 680. The blast destroyed or damaged 324 buildings within a sixteen–block radius, destroyed or burned 86 cars, and shattered glass in 258 nearby buildings. Motivated by the federal government's handling of the Waco Siege (1993) and the Ruby Ridge incident (1992), McVeigh's attack was timed to coincide with the second anniversary of the Waco Siege. Within 90 minutes of the explosion McVeigh was stopped by Oklahoma State Trooper Charlie Hanger for driving without a license plate, and arrested for unlawfully carrying a weapon. Forensic evidence quickly linked McVeigh and Nichols to the attack, and within days they were arrested and charged; Michael and Lori Fortier were later identified as accomplices. McVeigh was executed by lethal injection on June 11, 2001, and Nichols was sentenced to life in prison. As a result of the bombing, the U.S. government passed legislation designed to prevent future terrorist attacks by increasing the protection around federal buildings. From 1995 to 2005, over 60 domestic terrorism plots were foiled due to preventive measures taken in response to the bombing. On April 19, 2000, the Oklahoma City National Memorial was dedicated on the site of the Murrah Federal Building, commemorating the victims of the bombing. Annual remembrance services are held at the time of the explosion.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/3

AA 11 flight path from Boston to New York City

American Airlines Flight 11 was a scheduled U.S. domestic passenger flight from Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts, to Los Angeles International Airport. It was hijacked by five Islamic terrorists and deliberately crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City as part of the September 11, 2001, attacks. Fifteen minutes into the flight, the hijackers injured at least three people, forcefully breached the cockpit, and overpowered the pilot and first officer. Mohamed Atta, who was a known member of al-Qaeda, and trained as a pilot, took over the controls. Air traffic controllers noticed the flight was in distress when the crew stopped responding to them. They realized the flight had been hijacked when Atta mistakenly transmitted announcements for passengers to air traffic control. On board, two flight attendants contacted American Airlines, and provided information about the hijackers and injuries to passengers and crew. The aircraft crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 08:46 local time; the impact killed all 92 people aboard, including the hijackers. Many people in the streets witnessed the collision, and the Naudet brothers captured the impact on video, as did Pavel Hlava, and Wolfgang Staehle had a webcam set up that captured the impact through a series of photographs. Before the hijacking was confirmed, news agencies began to report on the incident and speculated that the crash had been an accident. The impact and subsequent fire caused the North Tower to collapse, which resulted in thousands of additional casualties. During the recovery effort at the World Trade Center site, workers recovered and identified dozens of remains from Flight 11 victims, but many other body fragments could not be identified.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/4

Panipat rail station

The 2007 Samjhauta Express bombings were a terrorist attack that occurred around midnight on 18 February 2007 on the Samjhauta Express, a twice-weekly train service connecting Delhi, India, and Lahore, Pakistan. Bombs were set off in two carriages, both filled with passengers, just after the train passed Diwana station near the Indian city of Panipat, 80 kilometres (50 miles) north of New Delhi. Sixty-eight people were killed in the ensuing fire and dozens more were injured. Of the 68 fatalities, most were Pakistani civilians, but the victims included some Indian civilians and Indian military personnel guarding the train. Investigators subsequently found evidence of suitcases with improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and flammable material, including three undetonated IEDs. Inside one of the suitcases containing the undetonated IEDs, a digital timer encased in transparent plastic was packed alongside a dozen plastic bottles containing fuel oils and chemicals. After the bombings, eight unaffected carriages were allowed to continue onwards to Lahore with passengers. Both the Indian and Pakistani governments condemned the attack, and officials on both sides speculated that the perpetrators intended to disrupt improving relations between the two nations, since the attack came just a day before Pakistani Foreign Minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri was to arrive in New Delhi to resume peace talks with Indian leaders. There have been a number of breaks in the investigation of the bombings but as of May 2008 nobody has been charged for the crime.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/5

1984 Rajneeshee bioterror attack

The 1984 Rajneeshee bioterror attack was the food poisoning of more than 750 individuals in The Dalles, Oregon, United States through the deliberate contamination of salad bars at ten local restaurants with salmonella. A leading group of followers of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh (now known as Osho) had hoped to incapacitate the voting population of the city so that their own candidates would win the 1984 Wasco County elections. The incident was the first bioterrorism attack in the United States, and the single largest bioterrorist attack in United States history. The attack is one of only two confirmed terrorist uses of biological weapons to harm humans. Having previously gained political control of Antelope, Oregon, Rajneesh's followers based in nearby Rajneeshpuram sought election to two of the three seats on the Wasco County Circuit Court which were up for election in November 1984. Fearing they would not gain enough votes, Rajneeshpuram officials decided to incapacitate voters in The Dalles, the largest population center in Wasco County. The chosen biological agent was Salmonella enterica Typhimurium, which was first delivered through glasses of water to two county commissioners, and then delivered on a larger scale at salad bars and in salad dressing. Seven hundred and fifty-one people contracted salmonellosis as a result of the attack, of whom 45 were hospitalized. There were no fatalities. Oregon Attorney General Dave Frohnmayer set up an interagency task force between the Oregon State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and executed search warrants in Rajneeshpuram. A sample of bacteria matching the contaminant that had sickened the town residents was found in a Rajneeshpuram medical laboratory. Two leading Rajneeshpuram officials were indicted and served 29 months in a minimum-security federal prison.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/6

World Trade Center aerial view March 2001

The World Trade Center (WTC) was a complex in Lower Manhattan in New York City whose seven buildings were destroyed in 2001 in the September 11 terrorist attacks. The site is currently being rebuilt with six new skyscrapers and a memorial to the casualties of the attacks. The original World Trade Center was designed by Minoru Yamasaki in the early 1960s using a tube-frame structural design for the twin 110-story towers. In gaining approval for the project, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey agreed to take over the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad which became the Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH). Groundbreaking for the World Trade Center took place on August 5, 1966. The North Tower (1) was completed in December 1970 and the South Tower (2) was finished in July 1971. Construction of the World Trade Center involved excavating a large amount of material which was used in making Battery Park City on the west side of Lower Manhattan. The complex was located in the heart of New York City's downtown financial district and contained 13.4 million square feet (1.24 million m2) of office space. The Windows on the World restaurant was located on the 106th and 107th floors of the North Tower, while the Top of the World observation deck was located on the 107th floor of the South Tower. Other World Trade Center buildings included the Marriott World Trade Center; 4 World Trade Center; 5 World Trade Center; 6 World Trade Center, which housed the United States Customs; and 7 World Trade Center, which was built in 1985. The World Trade Center experienced a fire on February 13, 1975 and a bombing on February 26, 1993. In 1998, the Port Authority decided to privatize the World Trade Center, leasing the buildings to a private company to manage, and awarded the lease to Silverstein Properties in July 2001. On the morning of September 11, 2001, Al-Qaeda-affiliated hijackers flew two 767 jets into the complex, one into each tower, in a coordinated suicide attack - resulting in 2,750 deaths. The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC), established in November 2001 to oversee the rebuilding process, organized competitions to select a site plan and memorial design. Memory Foundations, designed by Daniel Libeskind, was selected as the master plan, which included the 1,776-foot (541 m) 1 World Trade Center, three office towers along Church Street and a memorial designed by Michael Arad.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/7

Andreas von Bülow

The CIA and September 11 (German: Die CIA und der 11. September) is a controversial 2003 book by Andreas von Bülow, a former state-secretary in the German Federal Ministry of Defence and an SPD member of the German parliament from 1969 to 1994. The book has enjoyed considerable commercial success in Germany, where it is published by Piper Verlag, and has sold over 100,000 copies. However, it has faced allegations ranging from absurdity and fostering anti-Americanism, to anti-Semitism, while the quality of its sourcing and the timing of its publication have given rise to debate within the German publishing industry. In subsequent media appearances, Bülow has defended his work, and strongly denied that its content is anti-Semitic.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/8

Flag of the Communist Party of Peru

The Communist Party of Peru (Spanish: Partido Comunista del Perú), more commonly known as the Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso), is a Maoist guerrilla organization in Peru. When it first launched the internal conflict in Peru in 1980, its stated goal was to replace what it saw as bourgeois democracy with "New Democracy." The Shining Path believed that by imposing a dictatorship of the proletariat, inducing cultural revolution, and eventually sparking world revolution, they could arrive at pure communism. The Shining Path also believed that all existing socialist countries were revisionist, and that the Shining Path itself was the vanguard of the world communist movement. The Shining Path's ideology and tactics have been influential on other Maoist insurgent groups, notably the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) and other Revolutionary Internationalist Movement-affiliated organizations. Widely condemned for its brutality, including violence deployed against peasants, trade union organizers, popularly elected officials and the general civilian population, the Shining Path is regarded by Peru as a terrorist organization. The group is on the U.S. Department of State's list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, and the European Union and Canada likewise regard them as a terrorist organization and prohibit providing funding or other financial support. Since the capture of its leader Abimael Guzmán in 1992, the Shining Path has only been sporadically active. Certain factions of the Shining Path now claim to fight in order to force the government to reach a peace treaty with the rebels. Similar to the larger FARC in Colombia, some factions of Shining Path have reinvented themselves as a highly efficient cocaine smuggling operation, with an ostensibly paternalistic relationship to villagers.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/9

Twin towers of the World Trade Center burning.

The September 11 attacks (often referred to as September 11th or 9/11) were a series of coordinated suicide attacks by al-Qaeda upon the United States on September 11, 2001. On that morning, 19 al-Qaeda members hijacked four commercial passenger jet airliners. The hijackers intentionally crashed two of the airliners into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, killing everyone on board and many others working in the buildings. Both buildings collapsed within two hours, destroying nearby buildings and damaging others. The hijackers crashed a third airliner into the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C. The fourth plane crashed into a field near Shanksville in rural Pennsylvania after some of its passengers and flight crew attempted to retake control of the plane, which the hijackers had redirected toward Washington, D.C. There were no survivors from any of the flights. 2,973 victims and the 19 hijackers died as a result of the attacks. The overwhelming majority of casualties were civilians, including nationals of over 90 countries. In addition, the death of at least one person from lung disease was ruled by a medical examiner to be a result of exposure to dust from the World Trade Center's collapse. The United States responded to the attacks by launching a War on Terrorism. It invaded Afghanistan to depose the Taliban, who had harbored al-Qaeda terrorists. The United States also enacted the USA PATRIOT Act. Many other countries also strengthened their anti-terrorism legislation and expanded law enforcement powers. Some American stock exchanges stayed closed for the rest of the week following the attack, and posted enormous losses upon reopening, especially in the airline and insurance industries. The destruction of billions of dollars worth of office space caused serious damage to the economy of Lower Manhattan.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/10

Northern Ireland shown in red

The Real Irish Republican Army, otherwise known as the Real IRA (RIRA) and styling itself as Óglaigh na hÉireann (Volunteers of Ireland), is a paramilitary organisation which aims to bring about a united Ireland. The RIRA was formed in 1997 following a split in the Provisional IRA. It is an illegal organisation in the Republic of Ireland and designated as a terrorist organisation in the United Kingdom and the United States. The organisation has been responsible for a number of bombings in Northern Ireland and England, including the 15 August 1998 Omagh bombing, which killed 29 people. On 7 March 2009 RIRA members claimed responsibility for an attack on the Massereene Barracks that killed two British soldiers, the first to be killed in Northern Ireland since 1997.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/11

Supreme Court of Victoria

R v Thomas was an Australian court case decided in the Victorian Court of Appeal on 18 August 2006. It concerned the conviction in February 2006 of Joseph Thomas (nicknamed "Jihad Jack" in the media) on terrorism-related charges, specifically receiving funds from Al Qaeda. The appeal revolved around the admissibility of a confession Thomas made during an interrogation in Pakistan in 2003. The court found that the evidence, which was crucial to Thomas' convictions, was inadmissible because it had not been given voluntarily. The court accordingly quashed his convictions, but after further hearings ordered on 20 December 2006 that he be retried rather than acquitted.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/12

The old terminal building of the Entebbe International Airport as it appears today.

Operation Entebbe (also known as the Yonatan Operation (Hebrew: מבצע יונתן‎‎), the Entebbe Raid or Operation Thunderbolt) was a counter-terrorism hostage-rescue mission carried out by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) at Entebbe Airport in Uganda on the night of 3 July and early morning of 4 July 1976. IDF acted on intelligence provided by Israeli secret agency Mossad. In the wake of the hijacking of Air France Flight 139 by members of the militant organizations Revolutionary Cells and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - External Operations and the hijackers' threats to kill the hostages if their prisoner release demands were not met, a plan was drawn up to airlift the hostages to safety. These plans took into account the likelihood of armed resistance from Ugandan military troops. Originally codenamed Operation Thunderball by the IDF, the operation was retroactively renamed Operation Yonatan in memory of the Sayeret Matkal commander Lieutenant Colonel Yonatan "Yoni" Netanyahu, the older brother of Benjamin Netanyahu, who was the only commando killed in the fighting. All the hijackers, three hostages and 45 Ugandan soldiers were killed, and five Israeli commandos were wounded. A fourth hostage was murdered by Ugandan army officers at a nearby hospital. Idi Amin, the leader of Uganda at the time, was humiliated by the surprise raid. He believed Kenya had colluded with Israel in planning the raid and hundreds of Kenyans living in Uganda were massacred soon afterwards. The building in which the hostages were being held was built by an Israeli construction firm, which still had the blueprints. While planning the military operation, the Israeli army built a partial replica of the airport terminal with the help of the construction firm.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/13

Hezbollah posters in the aftermath of the 2006 Lebanon War

Hezbollah literally "party of God") is a Shi'a Islamist political and paramilitary organisation based in Lebanon. Hezbollah is now also a major provider of social services, which operate schools, hospitals, and agricultural services for thousands of Lebanese Shiites, and plays a significant force in Lebanese politics. It is regarded as a resistance movement throughout much of the Arab and Muslim world. Many governments, including Arab ones, have condemned actions by Hezbollah while others have praised the party. Several western countries regard it in whole or in part as a terrorist organization. Hezbollah first emerged as a militia in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, also known as Operation Peace for Galilee, in 1982, set on resisting the Israeli occupation of Lebanon during the Lebanese civil war. Hezbollah's 1985 manifesto listed its three main goals as "putting an end to any colonialist entity" in Lebanon, bringing the Phalangists to justice for "the crimes they [had] perpetrated," and the establishment of an Islamic regime in Lebanon. Hezbollah leaders have also made numerous statements calling for the destruction of Israel, which they refer to as a "Zionist entity... built on lands wrested from their owners." Hezbollah, which started with only a small militia, has grown to an organization with seats in the Lebanese government, a radio and a satellite television-station, and programs for social development. Hezbollah maintains strong support among Lebanon's Shi'a population, and gained a surge of support from Lebanon's broader population (Sunni, Christian, Druze) immediately following the 2006 Lebanon War, and is able to mobilize demonstrations of hundreds of thousands. Hezbollah and some other groups began the 2006–2008 Lebanese political protests in opposition to the government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora. Finally, on the basis of Doha Agreement, Hezbollah was granted veto power in Lebanon's parliament. In addition, National unity government was formed which Hezbollah has one minister and controls eleven of thirty seats in it. Hezbollah receives its financial support from Iran, Syria, and the donations of Lebanese and other Shi'a. It has also gained significantly in military strength in the 2000s. Despite a June 2008 certification by the United Nations that Israel had withdrawn from all Lebanese territory, in August of that year, Lebanon's new Cabinet unanimously approved a draft policy statement which secures Hezbollah's existence as an armed organization and guarantees its right to "liberate or recover occupied lands." Since 1992, the organization has been headed by Hassan Nasrallah, its Secretary-General.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/14
The Boricua Popular/People's Army — or Ejército Popular Boricua in Spanish — is a clandestine organization based on the island of Puerto Rico, with cells in the United States. They campaign for and support the independence of Puerto Rico from what they characterize as United States colonial rule. The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) describes the Boricua Popular Army as a terrorist organization. Also known as Los Macheteros ("the Machete Wielders") and 'Puerto Rican Popular Army', their active membership was calculated by professor Michael González Cruz on his book Nacionalismo Revolucionario Puertorriqueño to be composed by approximately 5,700 members with an unknown number of supporters, sympathizers, collaborators and informants, with cells (usually consisting of between six and ten members) in the United States and other countries, although a report by The Economist places the number of active members at 1,100 excluding supporters. The group has claimed responsibility for numerous bombings, attacks against the United States armed forces, and armed robberies since 1978, and was led primarily by former FBI Most Wanted Fugitive Filiberto Ojeda Ríos until his death in 2005.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/15

2008 Mumbai attacks

The 2008 Mumbai attacks were more than ten coordinated shooting and bombing attacks across Mumbai, India's largest city, by terrorists from Pakistan. The attacks, which drew widespread condemnation across the world, began on 26 November 2008 and lasted until 29 November, killing at least 173 people and wounding at least 308. Eight of the attacks occurred in South Mumbai: at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, the Oberoi Trident, the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, Leopold Cafe, Cama Hospital (a women and children's hospital), the Orthodox Jewish-owned Nariman House, the Metro Cinema, and a lane behind the Times of India building and St. Xavier's College. By the early morning of 28 November, all sites except for the Taj hotel had been secured by Mumbai Police and security forces. An action by India's National Security Guards (NSG) on 29 November (the action is officially named Operation Black Tornado) resulted in the death of the last remaining attackers at the Taj hotel, ending all fighting in the attacks. Ajmal Kasab, the only attacker who was captured alive, disclosed that the attackers were members of Lashkar-e-Taiba, the Pakistan-based militant organization, considered a terrorist organization by India, the United States, and the United Kingdom, among others. The Indian Government said that the attackers came from Pakistan, and their controllers were in Pakistan. On 7 January 2009, after more than a month of denying the nationality of the attackers, Pakistan's Information Minister Sherry Rehman officially accepted Ajmal Amir's nationality as Pakistani. On 12 February 2009, Pakistan's Interior Minister Rehman Malik, in a televised news briefing, confirmed that parts of the attack had been planned in Pakistan and said that six people, including the alleged mastermind, were being held in connection with the attacks.


Portal:Terrorism/Selected article/16

Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria

On 28 June 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir presumptive to the Austro-Hungarian throne, and his wife, Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, were shot dead in Sarajevo, by Gavrilo Princip, one of a group of six Bosnian Serb assassins coordinated by Danilo Ilić. The political objective of the assassination was to break off Austria-Hungary's south-Slav provinces so they could be combined into a Greater Serbia or a Yugoslavia. The assassins' motives were consistent with the movement that later became known as Young Bosnia. Serbian military officers stood behind the attack. At the top of these Serbian military conspirators was Chief of Serbian Military Intelligence Dragutin Dimitrijević, his righthand man Major Vojislav Tankosić, and Masterspy Rade Malobabić. Major Tankosić armed (with bombs and pistols) and trained the assassins, and the assassins were given access to the same clandestine tunnel of safe-houses and agents that Rade Malobabić used for the infiltration of weapons and operatives into Austria-Hungary. The assassins, the key members of the clandestine tunnel, and the key Serbian military conspirators who were still alive were arrested, tried, convicted and punished. Those who were arrested in Bosnia were tried in Sarajevo in October 1914. The other conspirators were arrested and tried before a Serbian kangaroo court on the French-controlled Salonika Front in 1916–1917 on unrelated false charges; Serbia executed three of the top military conspirators. Much of what is known about the assassinations comes from these two trials and related records. Assignment of responsibility for the bombing and murders of 28 June is highly controversial because the attack led to the outbreak of World War I one month later.


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