ISIS taking credit for downing that Russian airliner in the Sinai caused John Hinderaker to recall the same events from the 1980s, back when Iranian-backed Hezbollah terrorists were kidnapping Western diplomats in Beirut. They took the American CIA station chief, William Francis Buckley, then turned him over to the Iranians who tortured him for fifteen months until he died in captivity. Then they kidnapped some Russian diplomats…
I dimly remembered a news story from several decades ago that also involved Arab terrorism, and found it via Google. Here it is, from 1986:
The KGB has adopted novel, brutal and apparently effective methods of dealing with terrorists who attack Soviet interests in the Middle East, an Israeli newspaper reported Monday.
The Jerusalem Post said the Soviet secret police last year secured the release of three kidnaped Soviet diplomats in Beirut by castrating a relative of a radical Lebanese Shia Muslim leader, sending him the severed organs and then shooting the relative in the head.
The incident began when four Soviet diplomats were kidnaped last September by Muslim extremists who demanded that Moscow pressure the Syrian government to stop pro-Syrian militiamen from shelling rival Muslim positions in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli.
The militiamen, the Jerusalem paper said, did not cease their attacks, and the body of one of the Soviet diplomats, Arkady Katkov, was found a few days later in a field in Beirut.
The KGB then apparently kidnaped and killed a relative of an unnamed leader of the Shiasâ€™ Hezbollah (Party of God) group, a radical, pro-Iranian group that has been suspected of various terrorist activities against Western targets in Lebanon.
Parts of the manâ€™s body, the paper said, were then sent to the Hezbollah leader with a warning that he would lose other relatives in a similar fashion if the three remaining Soviet diplomats were not immediately released. They were quickly freed.
The newspaper quoted â€œobservers in Jerusalemâ€ as saying: â€œThis is the way the Soviets operate. They do thingsâ€“they donâ€™t talk. And this is the language Hezbollah understands.â€
Arab terrorists never again, to my knowledge, tried to kill or kidnap Russians in the Middle East.