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What Is The Black September Organization History Essay

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Published: Mon, 5 Dec 2016

The Black September Organization (BSO) was the Palestinian terrorist organization, which was a member of Fatah. It was found in the second half of 1970. Despite the fact that Black September was just a pert of Fatah, formed specifically for the beginning of the “anti Jordan terrorist front”, this organization needs to be observed as a separate topic. The reason for this attention is that the Black September in less than 4 years of terrorist activity has left such a deep mark in the modern history that many more generations will recall this “terrorist monster” with a shudder. The cruelty of this terrorist organization has surpassed such ultra-radical terrorists as George Habash, Naif Havatame, Abu Jihad and Wadi Haddad. Even the extremist Palestinian terrorist organizations left their brothers in arms from the Black September, because the terrorists of BSO were perpetrated a total outrage (Tristam 2007).

Looking through the history of the organization, there is a need to tell about the political situation in that time. After the end of the 1967 war and the setting of the control of Israel, a huge number of refugees (up to 200 thousand) settled in the Kingdom of Jordan. The territory of the country has become a rear base for the Palestine Liberation Organization. Jordan in the course of their work had a substantial losses both in military terms, (being the natural target for Israeli response), and in domestic policy, because the Palestinian organizations claimed the right to regulate the activities of their compatriots and, potentially, to political power in Jordan. After several clashes in 1969 and first half of 1970 between the Palestinians and Jordanian security forces, the royal army in September 1970 began decisive actions. In several weeks of fighting it put under the control the zones of settling people from Palestine, and the next year cut short Palestinians trying to return the previous status quo. Syria, being on the side of the Palestinians, took an active part in the conflict. So, in September 1970 there was still a civil war in Jordan, which cost thousands of lives of Palestinians. Only during one day, September 17, 1970 thousands of innocent Palestinians were killed; most of whom have found their death under the treads of tanks. These tragic events became known as “Black September” among Palestinians (Friedlander 16).

All these events eventually led to the foundation of a terrorist organization known as “Black September”. It was called so in memory of the tragic events of September 1970. A small terrorist cell was originally created for vengeance to the King Hussein; it consisted of the most vivid extremists of Fatah, who believed that negotiations were a waste of time. In addition to terrorist activities in the “Black September leadership was to make reconnaissance activities.

“Black September” was an integral part of Fatah. It consisted of activists of this organization and was financed from its budget. The Black September Organization reported directly to Yasser Arafat, who also personally made appointments to senior posts of some Fatah activists. The key figures of “Black September” were: a close relative of Arafat, Ali Hassan Salame, a Palestinian sphere known as Abu Hassan, and personal Salah Khalaf, Arafat’s deputy, better known as Abu Iyad (Dobson 13).

The activity of Black September Organization began with a hitherto unseen, large-scale hunt for the Jordanian diplomats and members of the Jordanian government. That is why the first act of terrorism carried out by this organization was the assassination of Jordanian Prime Minister Wasfi al-Tal in Cairo on November 28, 1971 (Dobson 15).

Inspired by the success, the rebels of “Black September”, in two weeks after the assassination of Wasfi Al-Tal prepared a new terrorist attack, in London. This time the target of terrorists has become the ambassador of Jordan in the UK Zaid al-Rifai. December 15, 1971 Zail al-Rifai was only slightly wounded in the arm, and immediately taken to a hospital in London.

The next surge of terrorist activity, who has led the “Black September” on the front pages of newspapers around the world, was the seizure of the Belgian airliner of Sabena Airline on May 8, 1972. Four gunmen seized the plane with more than 100 passengers and threatening to burst, demanded the release of 315 Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prisons. As a result of the storming of the aircraft by the unit “Sayeret Matkal”, the hostages were released; one passenger and all four terrorists were killed.

The most famous and tragic action of this organization was carnage in Munich on the 5th of September 1972. Eight terrorists broke into the residence of the Israeli delegation in the Olympic village in Munich. Two athletes were shot on the spot, and another nine were taken hostage. The main demand was the immediate release of two hundred members of the PLO, kept at that time in Israeli prisons (Wolf 69-72).

The Government of Golda Meir refused to do that, however, Interior Minister of Germany Hans-Dietrich Genscher continued to negotiate with the terrorists until the evening. Then the terrorists along with the hostages were taken by bus from the Olympic Village, put on a helicopter and taken to a military airfield near Munich, where the plane to Egypt was waiting for them. Once the terrorists came out of the helicopter, the German police opened the fire on them. As the result of that operation, 14 people were killed, including nine Israeli athletes, who were killed by terrorists. One policeman was also killed.

Here is some chronological list of the Black September Organization activity.

October 16. 1972 (Italy). The elimination of a member of the “Black September” Adel Vayelya Zvaytera in Rome.

October 29, 1972. The hijacking of the “Boeing 727” (owned by the West Lufthansa) by militants of Black September.

December 7. 1972. (France). The elimination of the PLO spokesman, Mahmoud al-Hamshari, who was responsible for external relations of the “Black September”.

December 28, 1972. (Thailand). Capture of the Israeli embassy in Bangkok by militants of “Black September”.

January 26, 1973. (Spain). Killing of a senior officer of the Israeli foreign intelligence service Mossad Baruch Cohen, by insurgents of “Black September” in Spain.

March 1. 1973. The capture of the Saudi Embassy in Sudan by militants of the “Black September” and killing the U.S. ambassador.

July 2. 1973 (USA). The murder of the military attaché of the Israeli Embassy in Washington.

September 28. 1973 (Austria). Hostage-taking of seven Soviet Jewish immigrants bound for Israel.

March 5.1975 (Israel). The seizure of the Tel Aviv Hotel Savoy by Fatah militants.

September 15. 1975 (Spain). The seizure of the Egyptian embassy in Madrid by Fatah militants.

March 11. 1978 (Israel). Terrorist act of Fatah militants on the route Haifa-Tel Aviv.

There were a lot of operations of the Israeli intelligence service Mossad, which fought against the “Black September”. “Mossad”, performing a special task of its prime minister, began searching the organizers of Munich attack; that operation was called the “Wrath of God “. The decision about the physical destruction (killing) of all persons directly or indirectly involved in the preparation and implementation of that attack was made. The future Prime Minister Ehud Barak also took part in that operation.

Before each operation, members of combat units, according to rumor, were permitted personally by Golda Meir. Already in 1972, Mossad eliminated 13 associated with the “Black September Palestinians (Melman 194).

On the 16th of September 1972 the Rome resident of “Black September” Wael Abu Tsvayter was killed with twelve shots from a pistol on the porch of his house.

On the 8th of December 1972, the Paris resident, Dr. Mahmoud Hamshari was killed by a bomb, mounted in the handset.

On the 24th of January 1973 in one of the Cyprus hotels in Nicosia, the resident of “Black September” Abad al-Shira was killed by a bomb, hidden under the mattress.

On the 31st of January 1973 in Athens, Mossad eliminated Zayad Muheisen (Melman 195).

On the 6th of April 1973 in Paris, Basil Al-Kubayshi, one of the leaders of Black September who took part in the preparation of the Munich attack was killed.

At night, on the 10th of April 1973 agents of Mossad in Beirut, conducted the operation “Spring of Youth “. As the result three leaders of “Black September” (two of them – Mohammad Najjar, and Kamal Abda) had been eliminated.

And on the 12th of April 1973 in Cyprus in the result of an explosion the terrorist Mousa Abu Zaid was killed, and the head of the organization Mohammed Boda blown in Paris.

In 1979, on the 22nd of January, one of the leaders of the “Black September” Ali Hassan Salame, known as Abu Hassan, was killed in Beirut. In 1973 in Norway, the South African Jewish Sylvia Raphael and the former Soviet citizen Marianne Gladnikova tried to kill him. But women have made a mistake and shot the waiter Ahmed Buchiki, taking him for Abu Hassan.

During a mission of destruction of militants, three agents of the Mossad were killed (Hoffman 11).

After the elimination of Ali Hassan Salame, the leader of the terrorist organization the Black September on the 22nd of January 1979 in Lebanon, the terrorist activities of the Black September Organization has been finished (Becker 74).

So concluding, we can say that the “Black September Organization” was the Palestinian terrorist group, intended to destroy the State of Israel. It was founded in November 1971 as a branch of the Fatah, specializing in the conduct of the shares of international terrorism. It was named in memory of hostilities in 1970 in Jordan, which explains one of the directions of terror disaster – an attempt on Jordanian diplomats and officials. The organizer and the leader of it was Ali Hassan Salameh (1932-1979), who possessed a strong character, great mind, fearlessness, ferocity and cynicism. The organization became notorious for the kidnap and murder of eleven Israeli athletes, officials, and German policeman, during the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich (Tristam 2007).

Work Cited:

Becker, Jillian. The PLO: the rise and fall of the Palestine Liberation Organization‎. (1984). P. 74. Print.

Dobson, Christopher. Black September: its short, violent history‎. (1974). pp. 13-15. Print.

Friedlander, Robert A., Levie, Howard S., Musch, Donald J., Alexander, Yonah. Terrorism: documents of international and local control. V. 29‎. (1979). P. 16. Print.

Hoffman, Bruce. Inside Terrorism. (1998). p. 11. Print.

Melman, Yossi. The master terrorist: the true story of Abu-Nidal. (1986). pp. 194-195. Print.

Tristam, Pierre. Black September. (2007). Retrieved from

Wolf, John B. Black September: a description of an international terrorist organization and an assessment of its implications for urban law enforcement agencies of the United States. (1974). pp. 69-72. Print.

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