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Old Monday, January 15, 2007
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Exclamation Timeline of U.S.-Iranian Relations

Timeline of U.S.-Iranian Relations

1953 to Present

1953
The Coup
The government of Iranian Prime Minister Muhammad Mussadeq is overthrown in a coup orchestrated by American and British intelligence agencies. Mohammad Reza Pahlavi is reinstated as the Shah of Iran.

1979
Khomeini Rises
Widespread unrest in Iran forces the Shah to flee. Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, an Islamic religious leader returns to Iran from exile and takes power.

1979
Hostage Crisis Begins
Iranian students storm the United States embassy in Tehran and hold scores of hostages, most for 444 days.

The United States cuts all diplomatic relations with Iran and imposes economic sanctions.
1980
Failed Rescue
The United States stages a doomed attempt to rescue the American hostages in Iran. Eight U.S. servicemen die.

1981
Freedom
The American hostages are released moments after Ronald Reagan succeeds Jimmy Carter as President of the United States.

1986
Iran-Contra
The public learns of an American effort to sell arms to Iran as a way of raising funds for anti-Communist fighters (known as Contras) in Nicaragua.

1988
Shot Down
The USS Vincennes mistakenly shoots down an Iran Air flight over the Persian Gulf killing 290 people.

1993
Dual Containment
The United States implements a policy toward Iran and Iraq known as "dual containment" in an effort to isolate both countries and contain their regional ambitions.

1997
Moderate Elected
Iran elects a new, more reform-minded president, Mohammad Khatami.

2002
"Axis of Evil"
U.S. President George W. Bush refers to Iran as part of an "Axis of Evil."

2002
Nuclear Fears
US alleges Iran is attempting to build nuclear weapons.

2003
Earthquake
An earthquake kills 50,000 people in the Iranian city of Bam. The United States provides direct aid to victims.

2005
Conservative Shift
Iran elects a new, more conservative president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

2005
"Outpost of Tyranny"
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice includes Iran in her list of "Outposts of Tyranny."

2005
Uranium Dispute
Iran resumes uranium conversion. The International Atomic Energy Agency says Iran is violating the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.

2006
The Letter
President Ahmadinejad sends a letter to President Bush calling for dialogue. No direct response is sent.

2006
Talks Resume?
The United States say it will join European nations in talks with Iran if Iran agrees to suspend uranium enrichment,
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