A city in northern Israel, Kiryat Shmona was founded in 1949 on the site of the Arab village of Helsa. Its names means "town of the eight," commemorating Zionist Joseph Trumpeldor, who was killed with seven others in a battle against Arab Palestinians at Tel Hai in 1920. The city had a population of approximately 21,000 in 2003. In April 1974, Kiryat Shmona was the site of a suicide raid by members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine–General Command, who entered an apartment building, killing all eighteen Israeli civilians who were in the building. Prior to the Arab-Israel War of 1982, Kiryat Shmona's location, less than 3 miles (5 kilometers) from the border with Lebanon, made it the frequent target of rockets fired from southern Lebanon by Palestinian militants.
SEE ALSO Arab-Israel War (1982).