[”A Profile from the Archives“ is a new series published by Jadaliyya in both Arabic and English in cooperation with the Lebanese newspaper, Assafir. These profiles will feature iconic figures who left indelible marks in the politics and culture of the Middle East and North Africa.]
Name: Dalal Al-Maghribi
Known as: Al-Maghribi
Date of Birth: 1958
Date of Death: 1978
Place of Birth: Beirut
Category: Political activist
Profession: Political activist
- Pseudonym: Jihad
- Was born in Al-Mazra`aa neighborhood in Beirut in 1958.
- Her father was a Palestinian from the village of al-Lidd and her mother was Lebanese.
- She received her primary education in Ya`abud school and her intermediate education in Haifa school. Both schools were run by UNRWA in Beirut.
- She joined "Fatah" movement in 1972.
- She led a military operation in the occupied territories on 11 March 1978, commanding the group of "Dayr Yasin." The operation was planned and organized by Khalil al-Wazir and was codenamed "Kamal `Adwan" in reference to the Palestinian intellectual who was assassinated in Beirut in 1973. She hijacked a bus going from Haifa to Tel Aviv and was killed in that operation.
Details of the Operation:
She successfully infiltrated the Palestinian territories with a group of Fedaiyeen and took control of an Israeli Mercedes. The group used this car to control an Israeli bus and drove it to Tel Aviv. On their way, they took control of another bus and moved its passengers to the first bus and continued driving and managed to cross more than one military checkpoint. This drove the military to deploy more troops and a fierce battle took place near Al-Khudaira settlement that lasted for more than thirty hours. Some Israeli hostages were killed in this battle, along with Dalal, Muhammad Shar`aan (Palestinian), Abdul Raoof Ali (Yamani), Muhammad Abdul Rahim (Palestinian), Muhammad As`aad (Palestinian), Muhammad Al-Shimmari (Yemeni), Ali Amriya (Lebanese), Khalid Abdul Fattah (Palestinian), and Yahya Skaf (Lebanese). The two Palestinians, Hussein Fayyadh and Khalid Ibrahim, were captured and the operation resulted in the death of thirty Israelis and wounded more than eighty settlers and soldiers.
The commander of the army at that time was Ehud Barak, and the minute he knew that Dalal was the commander of the group, he approached her body, grabbed her hair, and started pulling it before the cameras.
She was on the list of corpses claimed by Hizbullah in the deal of prisoner exchange with Israel made on 17 July 2008. DNA tests showed that her body was not returned, and the four returned bodies belong to anonymous martyrs. The location of her body is still unknown.
[This article was translated from the Arabic by Ali Adeeb Alnaemi. Click here for the Arabic text.]