The story

Today in history

Today in history



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JANUARY 16

Iranian Revolution and Mohammad Reza Pahlavi - 1979

In 1941, during World War II, the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union invaded Iran to secure Iranian oil resources for themselves. The Allies forced the shah to abdicate in favor of his son, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, in whom they saw a ruler who would be most favorable to them. In 1953, after the nationalization of Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, a conflict between the Shah and Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh led to the shaman's deposition and imprisonment. The Shah's reign became progressively dictatorial, especially in the late 1970s. With American and British support, Reza Pahlavi continued to modernize the but insisted on crushing opposition from the Shiite clergy and defenders of democracy. Islamists, communists and liberals promoted the 1979 Iranian Revolution, which led to the shah's escape from the installation of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as the country's top chief. Mohammad Reza Pahlavi died in exile in Egypt on July 27, 1980, at the age of 60.