Worst terrorist attacks in sports
MANILA, Philippines -- Like what the Olympic values stand for, sports are played to foster excellence, respect and friendship. There are times, however, when sporting events are used as a venue for terrorists to stage attacks and violently send their message to the whole world.
1972 - Munich Massacre
At dawn of September 5, 1972, the darkest chapter in Olympic history began in Munich, when 8 members of terrorist group Black September took hostage Israeli athletes and sports officials in a brazen attack at the latter's billeting quarters.
Negotiations gripped the world during that time and in the end, 17 people were killed, including 11 Israelis (6 coaches, 5 athletes), 5 members of Black September and a German police officer.
Until now, the Munich Massacre remains the worst terror attack in sports and is the first and only incident to put a halt to the Games, when a memorial service was held at the Olympic Stadium before almost 85, 000 people.
2013 - Boston Marathon bombing
Five hours after the Boston Marathon fired off, two large explosions struck near the finish line, killing at least three -- including an 8-year-old kid and injuring scores of runners and onlookers.
The White House branded the bombings as a terrorist attack, as media outlets reported that other unexploded devices have been found in the area.
As of posting time, none of the at least 10 FIlipinos who joined the marathon were injured in the twin blasts, according to Elmer Cato of the Philippine Embassy in the United States.
2009 - Cricket shooting in Pakistan
In a bizarre security lapse, 12 gunmen carrying sacks of weapons ambushed the Sri Lankan cricket team on its way to a cricket match against Pakistan in Lahore.
Eight were killed (6 police escorts, 2 bystanders) and 6 cricketers were injured as the terrorists -- looking highly-trained and armed with assault riffles and grenades -- attacked the convoy carrying the Sri Lanka squad.
The incident pushed Pakistan further into isolation as sports teams from all over the world have refused to come to the Asian country to participate in any sporting event, however big it may be.
2008 - Sri Lanka Marathon bombing
At least 14 people were killed, including a former Olympic marathoner and coach, and 90 others were wounded when a suicide bomber attacked at an opening ceremony for a marathon in Colombo.
Blood and body parts were scattered across the streets, where hundreds of runners and onlookers gathered at the fire-off of the marathon, which is part of the national celebration of the Sinhalese New Year.
The Sri Lankan government blamed the attack on the Tamil Tigers, a rebel group fighting for independence before getting defeated by the military in 2009.
1996 - Atlanta Olympics bombing
With a goal of embarrassing the United States government for its "abominable sanctioning of abortion on demand," Eric Robert Rudolph planted a bomb at the Centennial Olympic Park during the Atlanta Olympic Games in 1996.
Two people were killed, including a Turkish cameraman who had a heart attack while covering the event and 111 were injured in the worst terrorist attack in Olympic Games held in the United States.
Rudolph, who is now serving four life terms without the possibility of parole in a supermax prison, actually evaded arrest and perpetrated three more bombings before getting nabbed in 2003.
2002 - Massacre avoided in Madrid
As then-Real Madrid spokesman Joaquin Maroto perfectly put it, "a massacre" was narrowly avoided when two car bombs exploded near the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu hours before the home team faced archrival FC Barcelona in the Champions League semifinals.
One bomb exploded just 100m from the stadium, injuring 17 people and setting into fire at least 10 cars in an attack immediately claimed by Basque separatist group ETA.
Despite the bombings, the match went on, with Real Madrid earning a 1-1 draw to move into the finals of Europe's top football tournament. - Rappler.com