Hezbollah’s mysterious and ghost-like Mustafa Badreddine the commander who was killed in an airstrike on Syria, the week of May 12, 2016. The Hezbollah terrorist group is holding Syrian rebels accountable for carrying out the strike near the Damascus airport. The commander’s death has made Badreddine a martyr among his followers.
International authorities have sought the Hezbollah leader for questioning since 2005. He was believed to have orchestrated the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri. However, now that the world has located the evasive terrorist, he is dead and buried leaving questions of his involvement in numerous terrorist attacks unanswered.
Badreddine’s story seems like something out of a blockbuster movie. The leader has no official record of having ever existed. There were no legal documents associated with the Hezbollah commander. He had no passport or drivers license. There were no accounts in his name, and very few photos of the terrorist exist. He embodied the terms evasive and ghost-like. He was potentially responsible for the killing of hundreds of people, if not thousands, in terrorist attacks throughout the world.
The mystery behind the Hezbollah leader’s death is as mysterious as the man that was pursued by international authorities for decades. The strike said to be responsible for his death in Damascus, happened during a time where there were no recorded bombings. Initially, Hezbollah blamed Isreal for the commander’s killing but later withdrew the statement citing Syrian rebels. According to “The Independent,” Syrian rebels do not have the level of sophistication to carry out such a precise attack. Attacks by Syrian rebels result in a considerable amount of collateral damage, as opposed to surgical like maneuvers that take out a primary target. There is no other evidence as to who could be responsible for the Hezbollah commander’s ghost-like killing. The statement Hezbollah released claimed that Takfiris were responsible for the attack, which has been the only official statement on the assault. Takfiris is the general name associated with Sunni extremists in the Middle East.
The Hezbollah commander managed to remain a ghost-like figure while carrying out mass killings and terror repeatedly and over decades. Badreddine was the primary suspect in planning the bombing of a U.S. Marine base in 1983, that killed over 200 people. He is also accused of orchastrating the Lebanese Prime Minister’s assassination in 2005. In Kuwait, he was convicted for his connection with car bombings at the U.S. and French Embassies. He escaped the Kuwaiti prison during Sadam Hussien’s invasion of the country.
While the Hezbollah commander carried out terrorist attacks with a ghost-like persona, his lifestyle contrasted with that of a killer in the shadows. While orchestrating tragedy across the world, Badreddine was said to have lived a lavish, private life. “The Independent” reported that he owned an expensive jewelry store and apartment in the Christian area of Beirut. According to reports, he drove around the seaside resort of Jounieh in a Mercedes. Other reports stated that he had over 13 mistresses who were both Muslim and Christian.
Now the search for the Hezbollah ghost-like terrorist commander is over since he has been killed. His killing has now made him a martyr that other terrorists will use as an inspiration for their cause. The answers the world has been seeking will go unanswered, after experiencing decades of terror at the hands of the Hezbollah leader. Over time, more details are expected to be uncovered. Mourners of the leader suspect that spies have infiltrated the ranks of Hezbollah, which may lead to more controversy. The ripple effects of Badreddine’s killing are likely to be felt as time goes on.
By Gichele Cocrelle
Edited by Jeanette Smith
The Independent: What the killing of Mustafa Badreddine means forHezbollah and the future of the Middle East
The Independent: How the life of Mustafa Badreddine tells the political story of the middle east
CNSnews: Iran’s Moderate foreign minister laments martyrdom of top Hezbollah terrorist
Photo by maryatexitzero Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons – Creative Commons License