Was Qassem Soleimani one of the hostage takers at the American Embassy?


In 1979, a group of Iranian students stormed the US embassy in Tehran, taking dozens of hostages and holding 52 Americans in a 444-day standoff in what has become widely known as the Iranian hostage crisis. . The incident occurred in the midst of the Iranian revolution and the overthrow of the Supported by the United States Shah of Iran.

This impasse is linked to another international crisis, this one in 2020: on January 3, 2020, an American drone killed Qassem Soleimani, major general of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, describe as second in command of the Iranian government. When Iran threatened to retaliate, US President Donald Trump took to Twitter and blasted, declaring the United States was prepared to target 52 Iranian cultural sites.

Trump later returned this threat, recognizing that it would constitute a war crime. But the hostage crisis of 1979 was brought up again in a viral meme circulating on social media that linked Soleimani to the event.

We have found no evidence to support the claim that Soleimani is portrayed. The image used in the meme was taken by an Associated Press photographer, although the legend do not name anyone in the photo. He says: “In this archive photo from November 8, 1979, one of the hostages held at the US Embassy in Tehran, Iran, is shown to the crowd by Iranian students. Forty years ago, on November 4, 1979, Iranian students stormed the guards to take control of the United States Embassy in Tehran, triggering a 444-day hostage crisis that swept through America.

Given the intense coverage and enduring tensions between the United States and Iran over the hostage crisis and Soleimani’s high rank in the Iranian government, it seems unlikely that his alleged involvement has gone unnoticed. And we found no documentation, at least in English, that it was.

The US Embassy was taken over by a group called the Muslim Student Followers of the Imam’s Line, consisting of principally university students. The profiles of Soleimani’s life, on the other hand, state that he did not attend university, but that he worked for the municipal water service in his hometown of Kerman, before joining the Revolutionary Guards in 1979.

A 2013 profile on Soleimani published by the New Yorker, for example, reports:

In 1979, when Suleimani was twenty-two years old, the Shah fell in the face of a popular uprising led by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in the name of Islam. Fervently carried away, Suleimani joined the Revolutionary Guards, a force established by the new Iranian clergy leadership to prevent the army from mounting a coup. Although he received little training, perhaps only a forty-five day course, he made rapid progress. As a young guard, Suleimani was sent to northwest Iran, where he helped crush an uprising of ethnic Kurds.

When the revolution was eighteen months old, Saddam Hussein sent the Iraqi army to sweep the border, hoping to take advantage of the internal chaos. Instead, the invasion solidified Khomeini’s leadership and unified the country in the resistance, unleashing a brutal and entrenched war. Suleimani was sent to the front with a simple task, providing water to the soldiers there, and he never left. “I went to war for a fortnight’s mission, and ended up staying until the end,” he said. A photograph from the time shows the young Suleimani in a green fatigues, without insignia of rank, his black eyes fixed on a distant horizon. “We were all young and wanted to serve the revolution,” he told an interviewer in 2005.

A chronology published by the public policy think tank American Enterprise Institute also puts Soleimani’s work experience in the water service just before he entered the military in 1979.

In short, no evidence exists that Soleimani was the man depicted in the 1979 meme’s image, and it seems highly unlikely that Soleimani, who joined the military in 1979, would be present during the takeover. Tehran Embassy students. We therefore rate this claim “False”.

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