President Obama's Deputy National Security Advisor for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, John Brennan, gave a speech on 26 October 2012 in Dublin in which he called for the European Union to label Hezbollah as a terrorist organization (the United States has included Hezbollah in its list of terrorist organizations since 1995). He noted that Hezbollah "has a long history of terror", and indeed its involvement in attacks abroad in the past few years is a continuation of the intensive terrorist actions committed by the organization, together with Iran, over the past 30 years.
Except the terrorist attacks and the armed struggle it has been carrying out against Israel and the IDF since its foundation, Hezbollah was involved in numerous attacks in Lebanon and outside it against Western, Arab, Jewish and other targets.
In the 1980's, Hezbollah perpetrated, among others, a wave of plane hijackings around the world (including of TWA, two Kuwaiti planes and Air France planes); attacked the embassies of the US and France in Kuwait; attempted to assassinate the Kuwaiti Emir and placed explosives in Paris with the purpose of killing French citizens. In addition, in the 1980's, Hezbollah kidnapped tens of foreign citizens in Lebanon for negotiation purposes and killed a number of them while they were in captivity. Furthermore, it assassinated other Western officials, among them the French military attaché in Lebanon (1986) and the president of the American University in Beirut (1984). The United States has included Hezbollah in its list of terrorist organizations since 1995.
In the 1990's, Hezbollah carried out two powerful bomb attacks in Argentina with the help of Iran – one on the Israeli embassy and the other on the AMIA Jewish community building, both in Buenos Aires. In addition, a bomb attack on the Israeli Embassy in Thailand was foiled in 1994.
In the past few years, along with the wave of attempted attacks around the world - including in Europe - against Israeli targets, Hezbollah was involved in terrorist attacks in the Arab world:
• Lebanon, 2005: Four of its militants, headed by Mustafa Badr al-Din, were accused in the assassination of Former Prime Minister of Lebanon Rafik al-Hariri.
• Egypt, 2008: The security forces uncovered a network Hezbollah built to plan and execute attacks against Israeli tourists in Egypt.
• Iraq, 2006-2011: Hezbollah was involved in terror attacks in Iraq against US forces and their coalition allies.
• Yemen, 2011: Hezbollah, alongside Iran, provided significant assistance to the Houthis rebels in their fight against the ousted President, Ali Abdullah Saleh.
Significant Events in 30 Years of Hezbollah Terror:
Terrorist activity in Argentina against Jewish and Israeli targets:
• 17 March 1992 – Detonation of a vehicle loaded with explosives by a suicide bomber in the Israeli embassy in Argentina. 29 were killed and over 220 were injured.
• 18 July 1994 – Detonation of a vehicle loaded with explosives driven by a suicide bomber in the AMIA Jewish community building in Buenos Aires. 85 were killed and over 300 were injured.
Terrorist activity against American targets:
• 18 April 1983 – Detonation of a vehicle loaded with explosives in the US embassy in Beirut. 63 killed and 120 injured.
• 23 October 1983 – Detonation of a bomb-laden truck by a suicide bomber in the US Marines and French forces barracks in Beirut. 241 Americans and 58 French were killed.
• 14 June 1985 – Imad Mughniyeh hijacked a TWA flight from Athens to Rome. An American citizen was killed and his body was thrown from the plane.
• 18 January 1984 – The murder of the president of the American University in Beirut, Malcolm Kerr.
• 2006-2011 – Terror attacks against US forces and their coalition allies in Iraq.
Terrorist activity against Kuwaiti targets:
• 1985 – An attempt by Hezbollah to assassinate the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber Al-Sabah, was foiled. The operation was commanded by senior Hezbollah officer Mustafa Badr al-Din, who is also charged in the murder of Lebanese former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri.
• 3 December 1984 and 5 April 1988 – Hijacking of a Kuwaiti airplane, planned by Imad Mughniyeh. Two passengers were killed.
Terrorist activity against Egyptian targets:
• 2008 - A network Hezbollah built to plan and execute attacks against Israeli tourists in Egypt was exposed.
Terrorist activity against European targets:
Terrorist activity against French targets:
• 26 August 1983 and 31 July 1984 – Hijacking of Air France planes.
• 18 September 1986 – Assassination of the French military attaché in Lebanon, Col. Christian Gouttière.
• 1985-1986 – A wave of attacks in Paris carried out by Iran and Hezbollah. 13 people were killed and over 300 injured.
• 24 July 1987 – Hijacking of an Air France flight to secure the release of Hezbollah terrorists from French and West German prisons.
Terrorist activity against German targets:
• 13 January 1987 and March 1989 – Exposure of Hezbollah preparations and organization in West Germany.
• 1987-1989 – Kidnapping of 5 German citizens in Lebanon in protest to the judicial decision regarding the hijacker of the TWA flight.
Terrorist activity against Spanish targets:
• November 1989 – Exposure of Hezbollah preparations and organization in Valencia, Spain.
Terrorist activity against Swiss targets:
1988 and 1989 – Kidnapping of 3 Swiss citizens who worked for the Red Cross in Lebanon to demand the release of the Air France flight hijackers.