Iranian Hostage Crisis Case Study

808 Words 4 Pages
This paper identifies how the decisions President Carter made during the Iranian crisis primarily derived from the political climate of the time rather than from Carter’s own indecisiveness. Through an examination of both domestic politics and the advice given to Carter by top American officials, this paper illustrates how ordering a rescue mission proved the only viable option that President Carter ultimately heard from his advisors. The domestic politics during an election year mandated that President Carter only consider options that could resolve the crisis before the election. Similarly, many of Carter’s advisors misunderstood the difficulties of rescuing the hostages and consequently suggested ideas with little to no chance of success. …show more content…
After World War II, Britain maintained significant influence over Iranian oil supplies through the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (Farber, 2005). The Iranian Prime Minister, Mohammad Mosaddegh, attempted to nationalize this company, and was summarily ousted in a coup d’etat largely orchestrated by the CIA (Farber, 2005). Once the United States’ involvement in the coup became common knowledge among the Iranian people, many of them viewed the coup as an intervention aimed at furthering American interests at the expense of Iranian …show more content…
In what would quickly become the Iranian hostage crisis, a group of over 300 students broke off from a demonstration commemorating students killed by the old shah’s forces. These students stormed the American embassy on November 4 and took 66 Americans hostage, demanding that the United States deliver the old shah back to Iran, release frozen Iranian assets, apologize for its past interference in Iran’s affairs, and refrain from future meddling in Iran (Farber, 2005). Some of these direct demands, such as having the shah returned to Iran, had essentially no likelihood of coming to fruition. However, the Iranian students nonetheless succeeded in furthering their aims by credibly and poignantly warning the United States against future involvement in their affairs (Falk, 1980). The Iranian hostage crisis thus became a way for the Iranian people to take action rather than simply waiting for what they viewed as an inevitable subversion of their ideals through American influence (Houghton,

Related Documents