Condemnation of the bombing of the United States Embassy in Beirut on April 18 came form Lebanese and US political figures as rescue workers sifted through the ruins of the building.
Beirut, Lebanon (19, April 1983) (VIS -DIETZ)
GVs US Embassy, showing damage after explosion (2 shots)
GV PAN Rescue crews with heavy lifting equipment
Background: Condemnation of the bombing of the United States Embassy in Beirut on April 18 came form Lebanese and US political figures as rescue workers sifted through the ruins of the building. Over 50 people were killed in the explosion which is the latest in a long series of attacks. Since 1975 more than 100 diplomats, including three ambassadors, have been assassinated in Lebanon. The day after the bomb blast former Lebanese Prime Minister Saeb Salam called the action a 'horrible crime' and expressed his sympathy with the families of those killed. Not all the victims were US citizens, the death toll was high among the Lebanese. Security was strict around the French Embassy in Beirut following the bombing. The French form part of the multinational peacekeeping force in Lebanon and have suffered a number of attacks since their arrival in the country.
In Washington on April 18, Under Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger, and Senator Barry Goldwater were among those who condemned the bombing. Senator Goldwater said it did not help the situation to risk the lives of US marines and they should be pulled out. Under Secretary Eagleburger said the attack was not directed against the multinational troops but against the Embassy itself. A news has reported that the target of the bombing was Special Envoy Philip Habib who due was due to be in the Embassy at the time of the explosion.