MP urges U.S. sailors to review their country’s failures against Iran

May 11, 2019

TEHRAN – Mahmoud Sadeqi, a reformist parliamentarian from Tehran, has reacted to the deployment of U.S. warships in the Persian Gulf, urging the U.S. sailors to review their country’s past failures in confronting Iran.

In a Friday tweet, Sadeqi addressed the troops on the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier, which has recently entered the Persian Gulf waters, saying, “I advise the sailors on the [USS] Abraham Lincoln carrier to google ‘Operation Eagle Claw’ sometime.”

Operation Eagle Claw, known as Operation Tabas in Iran, was a United States Armed Forces operation ordered by U.S. President Jimmy Carter to attempt to end the Iran hostage crisis by rescuing 52 embassy staff held captive at the U.S. embassy in Tehran on April 24, 1980. 

Its failure, and the humiliating public debacle that ensued, damaged U.S. prestige worldwide. Carter blamed his loss in the 1980 U.S. presidential election mainly on his failure to secure the release of the hostages. 

The operation, one of Delta Force's first, encountered many obstacles and was eventually aborted. Eight helicopters were sent to the first staging area, Desert One, but only five arrived in operational condition. One encountered hydraulic problems, another was caught in a sand storm, and another showed signs of a cracked rotor blade.

During the operation's planning it was decided that the mission would be aborted if fewer than six helicopters remained operational, despite only four being absolutely necessary. In a move that is still discussed in military circles, the field commanders advised President Carter to abort the mission, which he did.

MH/PA

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