Fifteen years after the Israeli military removed all of its forces from the security zone in south Lebanon, the army’s archive has released declassified footage of the Israeli bombardment of the Beaufort just as IDF soldiers were pulling out.
The Beaufort, a Crusader fortress located just north of the Litani River, figures prominently in Israel’s military history due to its strategic value. The high elevation enabled anyone controlling the point to have a clear view of southern Lebanon and northern Israel.
During the 1982 invasion of Lebanon, the IDF captured Beaufort from Palestine Liberation Organization fighters, who had controlled the area since 1976.
The footage, which runs 30 minutes in length, shows the post just moments before the IDF withdrawal. The video also shows how IDF soldiers came under enemy fire as they were leaving the area.
In 2000, Israel’s then-premier, Ehud Barak, followed through on a campaign promise to end Israel’s 18-year presence in southern Lebanon.
The Beaufort was one of the more symbolic elements of the Israeli military’s occupation of southern Lebanon. It served as a post held by the Golani infantry brigades.