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The Presidents and the Shah: A Strategic Partnership

Explore a gallery capturing the close ties between the last Shah of Iran and six U.S. Presidents over a span of three decades.

Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, also known as Mohammad Reza Shah, the last Shah of Iran, courted a very close relationship with the United States and its leaders for almost three decades.

The American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) developed a secret plan to overthrow the then-democratically-elected Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh. Code-named Operation Ajax, the CIA carried out the plan in August 1953 and put the Shah in control of Iran. The Shah maintained a close strategic relationship with the United States and its presidents for the next 26 years, until the Shah’s overthrow in the Iranian Revolution in 1979.

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