Terrorist Samir Kuntar, who murdered an Israeli toddler in 1979 by smashing her head, among other acts of violence, was reportedly killed in an IDF airstrike in Syria.
Samir Kuntar, an Arab terrorist responsible for one of the most barbaric attacks in Israeli history, was reportedly killed in Syria while attempting to recruit members of the Druze community to fight on behalf of President Bashar al-Assad.
According to an Arabic newspaper, Kuntar was one of five people killed during an alleged Israeli drone strike near Hadar, a Druze village on the Syrian side of the Golan.
Kuntar was returned to Lebanon in 2008 as part of a prisoner exchange in return for the bodies of two IDF soldiers.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported last Thursday that the Israeli Air Force attacked a vehicle on the outskirts of Hadar, killing two members of Hezbollah and three members of a pro-Assad militia. The group, led by Kuntar, was working to recruit Druze in the Golan to fight on behalf of the Assad regime. On Sunday, London-based Arabic newspaper Asharq Alawsat said that Kuntar was among the dead.
Kuntar carried out one of the most gruesome terrorist attacks in Israeli history. In 1979, he infiltrated Israel by boat with three other members of the Palestine Liberation Front (PLF). The group killed a police officer in Nahariya before breaking into the home of the Haran family and taking hostage 31-year-old Danny Haran and his four-year-old daughter Einat.
Kuntar led his victims to the beach, where he shot the father in the back and drowned him. He then smashed the little girl’s head between beach rocks and the butt of his rifle. The family’s two-year-old, Yael, was accidentally smothered by her mother Smadar in an attempt to quiet her whimpering so that the terrorists would not find their hiding spot.
In 1985, members of the PLF hijacked the Achille Lauro cruise ship in order to demand the release of 50 Palestinian prisoners, including Kuntar. The terrorists killed a disabled Jewish passenger, Leon Klinghoffer, before throwing his body and his wheelchair overboard. Israel did not release Kuntar.
However, Israel freed him in 2008 and sent him to Lebanon as part of a prisoner exchange with Hezbollah. Israel traded Kuntar, four Hezbollah terrorists and the remains of some 200 Lebanese and Palestinians in return for the bodies of IDF reservists Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev. Kuntar was greeted in Lebanon as a hero by the top members of government and awarded the Syrian Order of Merit by Assad.
Mendi Safadi, an Israeli-Druze former government official who has been in contact with opposition groups in Syria, cautioned in The Jerusalem Post, “There is still no proof that he is dead or alive. Nobody knows what happened to him. I spoke with people, and everyone cited rumors that he was killed, but there is no proof. His body still has not arrived to his family.”
By: Sara Abramowicz, United with Israel