During the Crusades, the Knights Templar destroyed one of their own ships, killing 140 Christians in order to kill ten times as many Muslims. Another early example of suicide bombing occurred during the Belgian Revolution, when the Dutch Lieutenant Jan van Speijk detonated his own ship in the harbour of Antwerp to prevent being captured by the Belgians. Modern suicide bombing as a political tool can be traced back to the assisination of Czar Alexander II of Russia in 1881. Alexander fell victim to a Nihilist plot. While driving on one of the central streets of St. Petersburg, near the Winter Palace, he was mortally wounded by the explosion of hand-made grenades and died a few hours afterwards. The Czar was killed by the Pole Ignacy Hryniewiecki (1856-1881), who died while intentionally exploding the bomb during the attack. The ritual act of self-sacrifice during combat appeared in a large scale at the end of World War II with the Japanese kamikaze bombers. The first modern suicide bombing occurred in Iran in 1980 when 13-year old Hossein Fahmideh detonated himself as he ran up to an Iraqi tank at a key point in a battle of the Iran-Iraq War. Lebanon, during its civil war, saw a modern suicide bombing: the Islamic Dawa Party's car bombing of the Iraqi embassy in Beirut, in December 1981. Hezbollah's bombing of the U.S. embassy in April 1983 and attack on United States Marine and French barracks in October 1983 brought suicide bombings international attention. Other parties to the civil war were quick to adopt the tactic, and by 1999 factions such as Hezbollah, the Amal Movement, the Ba'ath Party, and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party had carried out around 50 suicide bombings between them. (The latter of these groups sent the first female suicide bomber in 1986. Female combatants have existed throughout human history and in many different societies, so it is possible that females who engage in suicidal attacks are not new.) Hezbollah was the only one to attack overseas, bombing the Israeli embassy (and possibly the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association building) in Buenos Aires; as its military and political power have grown, it has since abandoned the tactic. Lebanon saw the first bombing, but it was the Tamil Tigers who perfected the tactic and inspired its use elsewhere. Their Black Tiger unit have committed between 76 and 168 (estimates vary) suicide bombings since 1987, using more than 240 attackers. Their victims included former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi (assassinated by Thenmuli Rajaratnam), many prominent Lankan leaders (among them the late PM Ranasinghe Premadasa), Colombo's Central Bank, and even warships. In Northern Ireland, in the early 1990s, as part of the Provisional IRA campaign 1969-1997, the IRA used the tactic it called the the "proxy bomb" -a sort of involuntary suicide bomb, where a victim was kidnapped and forced to drive a car bomb into its target. In one infamous operation in Derry in 1990, the PIRA chained a Catholic civilian to a car laden with explosives, held his family hostage and forced him to drive to a British Army checkpoint as a "human bomb" where the bomb exploded, killing himself and five soldiers. This practice was stopped due to the revulsion its caused among the Irish nationalist community. Suicide bombing has, since 1993, been a particularly popular tactic amongst some Palestinian groups, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade. Bombers affiliated with these groups often use so-called "suicide belts", explosive devices (often including shrapnel) designed to be strapped to the body under clothing. In order to maximize the loss of life, the bombers may seek out caf
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