Abolhassan Bani-Sadr, the first president of the Islamic Republic of Iran after the 1979 revolution, says that by falsifying, misrepresenting, and taking critical facts out of context, the Academy-Award winning film 'Argo' delivers a pro-CIA message at the cost of the Iranian people and history.
It was not my intention to write about the film “Argo.” I initially viewed it as another Hollywood movie that aimed to keep an audience on its toes through some combination of fact and fantasy, in order to cash in at the box office. It is, indeed, a well-made movie. However, when first lady Michelle Obama presented its director, Ben Affleck, with the Oscar for Best Picture at this year’s Academy Awards, it also communicated a more political message that the film was approved by President Obama himself. I then felt that I needed to make my views of the movie clear, particularly as it mentions me.
Near the start, the film correctly cites a quotation from me that I believed the Americans who were being held in the embassy would be freed very soon. That information was based on a conversation with Ayatollah Khomeini, in which he had said that they would be released within the following three to four days.
The movie, however, presents this statement in an atmosphere which gives viewers the impression that the Iranian government supported the occupation of the embassy and that I was a lone voice in opposing it. This could not be further from the truth.
For a start, soon after the occupation of the American Embassy, then-Foreign Minister Ebrahim Yazdi told the Council of Revolution (a transitional council operating prior to the formation of the post-revolutionary parliament) that he assumed the occupation of the embassy was an Israeli-CIA coup. Prime Minister Mehdi Bazargan’s entire administration was against the occupation.
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