Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Wednesday 04 August |
Saint of the Day: St. John Vianney
home iconNews
line break icon

Bystander Sacrifices Life in Lebanon Suicide Bombing, Preventing Many More Deaths


Ali (C-L) and Malak (C-R), the children of Adel Termos, who was killed in a twin bombing attack that rocked a busy shopping street in the area of Burj al-Barajneh in Beirut's southern suburb, carry a portrait of their father during his funeral in the village of Tallussa in the Nabatiyeh governorate, south of Lebanon on November 13, 2015. Lebanon mourned 44 people killed in south Beirut in a twin bombing claimed by the Islamic State group, the bloodiest such attack in years, the Red Cross also said at least 239 people were also wounded, several in critical condition.

John Burger - published on 11/16/15 - updated on 06/08/17

Adel Termos saw second suicide bomber approaching crowd and sacrificed himself

In the wake of the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris, a story has emerged from a different act of terrorism that is giving people renewed hope in humanity.

A day before the Paris attacks, twin suicide bombings in Lebanon took 45 lives and wounded more than 200. The Islamic State group later claimed responsibility for the attack, which took place near a mosque in the Beirut suburb of Burj al-Barajneh.

The death toll of the Nov. 12 attack would have been higher, were it not for the selflessness of a father of two, whose quick action saved lives but led to the loss of his own.

Eyewitnesses told CNN that Adel Termos, 32, and other worshippers at the mosque went to see what had happened after the first bomb went off.

“Adel noticed a man running down the hill … screaming, ‘Allahu akbar, Allah akbar!'” a witness said. According to Public Radio International, Termos tackled him to the ground, causing the suicide bomber to detonate.

“There are many many families, hundreds of families probably, who owe their completeness to his sacrifice,” wrote Beirut blogger and physician Elie Fares.

“I am alive, and happy, and proud of my husband who held our family name up high and honored us,” Termos’ widow, Bassima, told CNN.

Burj al-Barajneh is a predominantly Shia neighborhood, and the suicide attack took place outside a Shia mosque. The Islamic State is a Sunni movement.

Lebanon has seen deadly spillovers from the Syrian conflict including a wave of bombings and suicide attacks in 2013 and 2014, according to The Guardian. Thursday’s twin blast was one of the deadliest bombings to hit the country since the end of its 1975–90 civil war:

Previous explosions have also targeted Shia-populated areas of Lebanon and have been claimed by militants who say it was payback for Hezbollah’s participation in the Syrian civil war. The group has been fighting in Syria along with President Bashar Assad’s forces.  

Islamist MilitantsLebanon
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Saint Mary of the Angels
Bret Thoman, OFS
All your sins will be forgiven if you go to a Franciscan church o...
Ignacio María Doñoro
Francisco Veneto
The military chaplain who pretended to be a criminal to rescue a ...
Violeta Tejera
Carlo Acutis’ first stained glass window in jeans and sneak...
Theresa Civantos Barber
The one thing we all should do before this summer ends
Philip Kosloski
Most priests can’t absolve these sins
Ary Waldir Ramos Diaz
1st Feast of Our Lady of Silence is August 1
Zelda Caldwell
World-record winning gymnast Simone Biles leans on her Catholic f...
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.