The CIA, a Fake Movie, and Escape from Iran

I became politically aware in the late 70s. The first two national stories I recall were the oil embargo (I'm told I used to line up all my toy cars and trucks in the living room and play "Gas Line") and the Iranian hostage crisis.

I had solutions to those problems in mind. The solution to the oil embargo was to ban auto racing.

The solution to the Iranian hostage crisis was to drop an Atomic Bomb in the Iranian dessert. If they didn't release the hostages that day, we would drop another A-Bomb the following day, a little closer to Tehran. Each day we would drop an A-Bomb closer until they either released the hostages or we destroyed Tehran. Either way, the problem would be solved.

They seemed like good ideas to a 9-year-old.

While I knew the general story of the 52 hostages held for 444 days, I didn't know the story of 6 Americans who escaped the Embassy the day it fell and fled through Tehran for days before finding secret refuge with the Canadian Embassy.

This month Wired has a fascianting story of how the CIA rescued those 6 Americans and snuck them out of Iran, right through the airport. It's a story of disguise, tenacity, and a fake movie studio. The details of the cover story are amazing.

For the operation in Tehran, his strategy was straightforward: The Americans would take on false identities, walk right out through Mehrabad Airport, and board a plane. Of course, for this plan to work, someone would have to sneak into Iran, connect with the escapees, equip them with their false identities, and lead them to safety past the increasingly treacherous Iranian security apparatus. And that someone was him.

You can read the story online, or pick up a copy of this month's issue. It's the one with Furture Hiro Nakamura (Masi Oka) on the cover.

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