Friday, August 23rd | 22 Av 5779
Ros Sloboda, a wounded survivor of the 1972 terror attack at Israel’s Lod airport in Tel Aviv said, “I was just waiting for the next bullet to hit me, because I was convinced that would kill me,” in a chilling interview on the BBC program ‘Witness’ that aired on Wednesday.
In May, 1972, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine recruited three gunmen from Japan’s Red Army terror group to carry out the airport attack to avenge the killing of two Arab hijackers earlier that month.
The three Japanese students arrived on an Air France flight from Paris. Once their luggage came through, they drew automatic weapons and hand grenades, and began shooting at people indiscriminately, killing26 people and injuring more than 70 others. One of the terrorists killed himself, another was shot by airport security guards and the third was arrested.
Recalling that day, May 30, 1972, Sloboda, who was 23 at the time, described hearing the noise of shattering glass, then “people started dropping, there was blood everywhere.” She said she started to run, until she felt blood at the back of her thighs, and realized she’d been shot.
Sloboda described the horrific scene as “the stuff of nightmares, really.” A year later, she moved home to London, where she reflects on life in her garden and has empathy for other survivors of terror attacks, often writing them letters to affirm that life goes on.