I found Jim Doyle's Saturday Valley Voices commentary about the 1983 bombing in Beirut, Lebanon, that killed 241 U.S. servicemen interesting. But he left out one part: who did it.
The attack was planned by Imad Mugniyeh, a leader of Hezbollah and one of its most murderous terrorists. He is also thought responsible for attacks on the U.S. Embassy in 1983, the Israeli Embassy and a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires in 1992 and 1994, and many murders and kidnappings. He was finally killed in 2005, allegedly by Israeli agents.
So what is Hezbollah? Ostensibly a Lebanese organization, it is funded, armed and controlled by Iran. It's been called "the foreign legion of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards," Iran's long arm of terrorism, which has struck Western, Israeli and Jewish targets from the Mideast to South America to Europe. It precipitated a war with Israel in 2006, and is considered stronger than the Lebanese Army. It is also heavily into the drug trade.
Today it is fighting alongside Bashar al-Assad's forces in Syria, trying to keep Syria under Iranian domination, an essential part of Iran's program to dominate the Mideast.
Terrorism isn't random. Understanding it starts by knowing the perpetrators.