To those of us who remember going to bed each night serenaded by Ted Koppel’s voice on ABC’s “Nightline,” the latest film by Ben Affleck will bring back vivid memories.
Yet remarkably, even though we remember how the Iranian Hostage Crisis turned out, the personal stories and occasional acts of heroism behind the daily headlines remain mostly untold and little known.
“Argo” tells the griping story of a secret CIA-led mission to rescue six American hostages who managed to escape the doomed American Embassy on the day it was swarmed by an Iranian mob, which eventually led to a 444-day stalemate for those left behind who remained trapped in captivity. The six consular workers who managed to slip out a side door, just as the Embassy compound was being stormed, hid away for more than two months. They were housed at great risk inside the Canadian Ambassador’s residence, in Tehran.
Unfortunately for the hostages, the time clock is ticking. The Canadian Ambassador receives word that his mission is to close, leaving the hidden Americans in a proverbial lifeboat, now suddenly taking on water.
This sets into motion one of the oddest alliances ever for a clandestine operation, bringing together intelligence officials working alongside Hollywood insiders who must concoct a phony film as a cover story. The wacky idea is to pretend to make a movie in Iran, and smuggle out the American diplomats.Read More