TDISH: A Terrible Case of Mistaken Identity

From late August into early September, 1972, the world gathered as it does every four years to celebrate peace and sport.  This time the gathering was to be held in Munich, West Germany.  Ap_munich905_t.jpgUnfortunately, these Olympics were to be marred by one of the greatest tragedies ever to strike the games.  On the evening of September 5, 1972, eight members of the Palestinian terrorism group, Black September, attacked the dormitories in which the Israeli delegation was staying.  By the time the horror was over, 11 athletes and coaches lay dead along with 5 of the terrorists.

In retaliation for this horrific attack, the Israeli national intelligence agency, Mossad, struck out at the culprits and those who supported them in a series of assassinations that have been dramatized in movies such as Steven Spielberg’s Munich. However, not all of the victims of the so-called Operation Wrath of God were terrorists.  On July 21, 1973, a team of Israeli assassins gunned down a man who was on his way home with his pregnant wife in Lillehammer, Norway.  This man was Ahmed Bouchikhi, a Moroccan writer living in Norway.  Bouchikhi had no affiliation with Black September or any other Palestinian organization.  His only crime was looking somewhat like Hassan Salameh, an intelligence agent for the Palestinian Liberation Organization.  This attack caused strained relations between Israel and Norway since Mossad had no authorization to conduct such an operation on Norwegian soil.  To this day, Israel denies any wrong-doing in this event, but they did pay Bouchikhi’s wife a settlement.  Six Mossad agents were captured by Norwegian officials and were found culpable for the death.  A Norwegian court has issued a warrant for former Mossad agent, Michael Harari, whom they suspect of having masterminded the attack.  Norway, however, does not expect Harari to ever be turned over to their custody.

Source: Mellgren, Dylan. “Norway Solves Riddle of Mossad Killing.” The Guardian. 1 March 2000.
Featured Image. “Mossad Logo.” By Source, Fair use.
Munich Massacre.” By Source, Fair Use.

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