Carlos the Jackal heads to his second trial in Paris on Monday, but the heads of state -- Qaddafi, Assad, Hussein -- who backed his brand of revolutionary international terrorism have thinned dramatically since he was first convicted. The career of Carlos the Jackal, who was born Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, is one of the classic studies of state-sponsored terrorism during the Cold War, when Ramirez operated under the protection of Soviet Union-sponsored rogue states. Ramirez, brazen as ever, declared himself to be “a professional revolutionary” as Monday’s trial got underway, but since his arrest and his first conviction, those who supported him in that capacity have either faded or disappeared completely.
It was only after the Soviet Union fell in 1991 that Sudan, where Ramirez was hiding, decided it wasn't worth it to protect him anymore and reportedly made a deal with French Intelligence to hand him over in 1994. France had already convicted Ramirez in absentia for the murders of two policemen in 1975 (though he was re-tried and convicted in 1997), and he’s serving time for those charges now. The new charges stem from four bomb attacks in France in 1982 and 1983 that killed 11 and wounded 195, which French authorities say Ramirez carried out as “part of a personal war that Mr. Ramírez waged against the French authorities in an effort to secure the liberation of his girlfriend at the time, Magdalena Kopp, a German former revolutionary who had been imprisoned for an attempted bombing in 1982,” The New York Times reports.