In this video segment adapted from American Experience, watch newsreel footage, archival photos, and interviews to explore the events related to the seizure of 53 American hostages by Iranian radicals in 1979, at the dawn of Iran's Islamic Revolution. Fueled by widespread anger at the autocratic policies of the Shah of Iran, religious leader Ayatollah Khomeini led a successful revolt that established an Islamic republic. President Carter's decision to admit the deposed shah, a former American ally, into the United States for medical treatment preceded the seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and 53 Americans who worked there in October 1979. Negotiations failed to secure the hostages' release, which did not occur until the swearing in of Carter's successor, President Ronald Reagan. This resource is part of the American Experience Collection.
This media asset was adapted from American Experience: "Jimmy Carter".