Students will determine, evaluate, and then support with evidence if Jimmy Carter's Presidency was a miserable failure or where their outside forces working against him (did events conspire against him)?
Like Vietnam, Iran was a problem the United States inherited in the 1950s. In 1953, Iranian nationalism turned militant under the leadership of Premier Mohammed Mossadegh, who attempted to nationalize the oil industry. This effort resulted in a British blockade and the United States supplying arms to the Shah, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, through the C.I.A. The shah fled the country but returned after the leftist revolution of Mossadegh was ended. Thus, the Shah was identified with foreign influence as he became increasingly dictatorial.
In 1961, the Shah began his "revolution from the throne" in an effort to modernize the country and to improve public health, conditions for the poor, and the role of women. These efforts were resisted by religious leaders (mullahs) who took offense at these efforts. To overcome their resistance to modernization, the Shah founded a secret police organization known as SAVAK to battle those considered enemies of progress. One result of the Shah's efforts was the increased concentration of wealth in the cities. Consequently, city ways became offensive to the rural population.
In 1970, Britain withdrew her troops from the Persian Gulf, thus affecting the stability of the region. The United States considered the Sha and his army essential to Middle East stability. The army supported him and the United States gae him aid, but the mosques became centers for discontent. In 1978, demonstrations turned to rioting. Orchestrating opposition to the Shah was Ruhollah Khomeini, a mullah in exile in France at the time, who acquired the tittle Ayatollah.
In 1979, the Shah left Iran and Khomeini returned from exile. Immediately, Khomeini set up an alternate government, and the government of the Shah collapsed. Shortly thereafter, fragmentation of groups involved in the revolution led to guerrilla warfare. Reprisal and suppression characterized Iran in 1979. IN November 1979, the U.S. embassy in Iran was seized and fifty-two Americans were held hostage. Iran demanded that he United States force the Shah to return to stand trial, and the crisis had begun.