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Signature of the American military attache, a hostage in Iran, 1979-1981
Signature: "Charles W Scott", 5x3 card. Iranian Shah Reza Pahlavi was overthrown in 1979 and replaced by a militant Islamic government headed by Ayatollah Khomeini. On November 4, 1979, Iranian students - whether with or without the foreknowledge of their government is still disputed - seized the US Embassy and took its staff hostage. Although some hostages were released, 52 Americans were held captive for 444 days. US Army Colonel Charles W. Scott, a military attaché, was one of those hostages. The hostages were finally released on January 20, 1981, twenty minutes after President Reagan was inaugurated to succeed Jimmy Carter, whom he had defeated for re-election on the first anniversary of the hostage crisis. Colonel Scott figures prominently in the debate over the timing of the hostages' release. When Reagan was elected, one of the militant students asked Scott how the President would deal with the crisis. Scott replied, "Boom," predicting that Reagan would issue an ultimatum requiring Iran to choose between immediate release of the hostages and war with the United States. Many analysts attribute resolution of the crisis to Reagan's reputation for toughness. Ten years later, however, Scott was one of seven hostages to sign an open letter to the Congress (June 13, 1991) asking for an investigation of "whether a private citizen or government official, may have participated in delaying release of the hostages for political gain." Ink note on verso shows through faintly at bottom. Fine condition.

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