Thirty-six years ago today two Iranian-backed Hizballah suicide bombers drove trucks into buildings housing U.S. and French peacekeepers from the Multinational Force in Lebanon at Beirut International Airport. In a statement, U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo said:
"We grieve for those 220 U.S. Marines, 18 sailors, and three soldiers murdered that day. Today, we remember their sacrifice and the tremendous loss suffered by their families, friends, and partners.
"Our outrage over this despicable act of terrorism perpetrated on those patriotic men and women remains as deep as ever. As President Reagan said from the White House lawn back in 1983, 'These deeds make so evident the bestial nature of those who would assume power if they could have their way and drive us out of that area.' We remain more determined than ever to push back on those who threaten the sovereignty, stability, and prosperity of this vital region."
Thirty-six years ago a tragedy occurred that echoes today. Iran, the world's top sponsor of terrorism, still supports groups that pursue power at the expense of innocent lives. We honor the lives lost in the Beirut barracks bombings as we continue to work for peace in the region. pic.twitter.com/WyEmUJ7cJl— Department of State (@StateDept) October 24, 2019
Today, we remember the barbaric 1983 Beirut barracks bombings. We will not forget those brave Marines, sailors, and soldiers who gave their lives for the preservation of peace.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) October 23, 2019