Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Jews and Westerners Targeted in Mumbai Terror Attacks

A series of devastating coordinated terror attacks in Mumbai, India, which killed over 170 people and wounded approximately 300, is the latest act of terrorism to specifically include Jews outside Israel among its targets.

At least ten armed militants attacked several locations frequented by tourists throughout Mumbai, including a railway station, a popular restaurant, a hospital, two hotels and a Jewish Center.

The attack, which lasted three days beginning on the evening of November 26, 2008, claimed the lives of at least 22 Westerners, including six Americans and four Israelis, and over 100 Indians.

Gunmen killed six Jews – four Israelis, an American and a Mexican - at the Nariman House, the Mumbai headquarters of the ultra-Orthodox Chabad Lubavitch movement. During the two-day standoff, the hostages were reportedly tortured by their captors before they were bound together and killed. Three of the victims at the Nariman House managed to escape, including an Israeli man and a two-year-old boy with his nanny.

In addition to the Nariman House, the militants held hostages at the Oberoi-Trident hotel and the Taj Mahal Palace hotel. They also attacked the Chhatrapati Shivaji railway station, the Cama and Albless Hospital, the Café Leopold and the State Bank of India.

Nine of the militants were killed and one, Azam Amir Kasab, was captured by Indian authorities. Kasab, a 21-year-old Pakistani national, reportedly said that he belongs to
Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), a Pakistani-based Islamic terrorist organization with links to Al Qaeda. Kasab admitted that he the other gunmen trained at LeT camps in Pakistan for about six months before carrying out the planned attacks. At the terrorist training camp, the men allegedly learned close-combat techniques, hostage-taking, handling explosives, satellite navigation and high-seas survival skills.
Kasab also reportedly told Indian authorities that Israelis were specifically targeted to avenge atrocities on Palestinians, which is why they targeted the Nariman House. Some of the gunmen allegedly previously stayed in the Nariman House on a rental basis, identifying themselves as Malaysian students.

List of attacks against Jews and/or Israeli targets outside Israel since 9/11.

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