The Avivim school bus massacre was a terrorist attack on an Israeli school bus on May 22, 1970 in which 12 civilians were killed, nine of them children, and 25 were wounded, one of whom died of a wound sustained in the attack 44 years later. The attack took place on the road to Moshav Avivim, near Israel's border with Lebanon. Two rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) were fired at the bus. The attack was one of the first carried out by the PFLP-GC.
Early in the morning, the bus departed from Avivim heading with its passengers to two local schools. This route had been scouted by the militants, believed to have infiltrated from Lebanon, and an ambush was set up. As the bus passed by, ten minutes after leaving Avivim, it was attacked by heavy gunfire from both sides of the road. The driver was amongst those hit in the initial barrage, as were the two other adults on board. The three were killed as the bus crashed into an embankment as the attackers continued firing into the vehicle.
The attackers were never apprehended.
The children, who were in first to third grade, were buried in a special plot in Safed. A monument commemorating the victims of the attack stands in the middle of the moshav.
Leah Revivo, who survived the attack at age nine, died in 2014 at age 52 over an infection that had been brought on by a piece of shrapnel that was lodged in her brain as a result of the attack.
Israel retaliated for the massacre by shelling four Lebanese villages, killing 20 people, injuring 40, and spurring thousands of southern Lebanon's residents to flee north. This in turn provided one of the motivations for the Dawson's Field hijackings of 6 September 1970. The IDF also began patrolling regularly inside southern Lebanon after the massacre.
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