Full Story On How #Israel Successfully Carried Out A Secret Dangerous Operation In Idi Amin’s #Uganda
The secret operation Israel carried out was known as Operation Entebbe or Operation Thunderbolt and it was a successful counter terrorist hostage mission carried out by Commandos of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) at Entebbe Airport in Uganda on 4th July 1976.
According to historical records; a week earlier, on 27 June 1976, an Air France Airbus A300 jet airliner with 248 passengers had been hijacked by two members of the Popular Front For the Liberation of Palestine External Operations (PFLP- EO) under orders of Wadie Haddad (who had earlier broken away from the PFLP of George Habash), and two members of the German Revolutionary Cells.
The hijackers had the stated objective to free 40 Palestinian and affected militants imprisoned in Israel and 13 prisoners in four other countries in exchange for the hostages.
The flight which had originated in Tell Aviv with the destination of Paris, was diverted after over a stopover in Athens via Benghazi to Entebbe (Uganda), the main airport of Uganda.
The Ugandan government supported the hijackers and the dictator, Idi Amin, who had been informed of the hijacking from the beginning, personally welcomed them.
After moving all hostages from the aircraft to a disused airport building, the hijackers separated all Israelis and several non-Israeli Jews from the larger group and forced them into a separate room.
Over the following two days, 148 non-Israeli hostages were released and flown out to Paris. 94, mainly Israeli, passengers along with the 12-member Air France crew, remained as hostages and were threatened with death.
The IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) acted on Information provided by the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad. The hijackers threatened to kill the hostages if their prisoner release demands were not met. This threat lead to the planning of the rescue operation. These plans Included preparation for armed resistance from Idi Amin’s troops.
The operation took place at night. Israeli transport planes carried 100 commandoes over 4,000 kilometers to Uganda for the dangerous rescue operation. The operation which took a week of planning lasted 90 minutes.
Of the 106 remaining hostages, 102 were rescued and 3 were killed. The other hostage was in a hospital and was later killed.
5 Israeli Commandos were wounded and one unit commander, Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu, was killed (The late Colonel was an Older brother of Benjamin Netanyahu who would later become Israel’s Prime Minister).
All the hijackers and 45 Ugandan soldiers were killed and series of Ugandan aircrafts were destroyed.
The Operation Entebbe, which had the military code name, Operation Thunderbolt was regarded as one of the most dangerous military rescue operations that was ever carried out by Israel.