The Iranian Hostage Crisis: 30 Years Later

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 5, 2009–On the 30th anniversary of the hostage crisis in Iran, the Iranian government planned rallies to demonize America. Anti-Khamenei protestors had a different plan, though, using the occasion to denounce the oppressive Islamic dictator. The opposition even addressed Obama, chanting, “Obama, Obama, you are either with us or with them,” according to the Wall Street Journal.

What was the administration’s response? They called for “moving forward” with diplomacy.

The Obama administration’s insistence on diplomatic overtures is just one of many failures perpetuated by American foreign policy over the past 30 years, argues Elan Journo, fellow at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights. The Iranian invasion of the U.S. embassy in Tehran on November 4, 1979, “turned out to be the first act of war against us by what became the Islamic totalitarian regime in Iran. Jimmy Carter’s handling of that crisis was abysmal: Washington was humiliated publicly as the hostages remained captive for more than a year, and then it caved. The next Iranian attack (in Lebanon) was lethal–and the next one after that, even more so.

“There followed a spiral of aggression–some attacks funded and directed by Iran, some carried out by Islamist groups inspired by its advances. Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and Bill Clinton all failed to connect the dots to see in the attacks a distinct enemy pursing an ideologically driven war: the Islamic totalitarian movement. None took the steps necessary to defeat it.

“Last summer Iranian protesters bravely challenged their government’s legitimacy–and Obama spurned them, including those among them who truly seek freedom. The protestors returned this week–and again Obama refused to support them. Washington is betraying U.S. interests by seeking to appease the theocrats in Teheran. This policy ensures the continuation and strengthening of the anti-American Islamist regime.”