Iranian Civil War
Date June 26, 1981 - March 18, 1987
Location Persian Gulf, Iran, Arabian Peninsula, Strait of Hormuz
Result Unity Victory
  • Treaty allowing constitutional monarchy is signed
  • Russia gains Northern Iran
  • Bushehr and Fars made an American Protectorate
Flag of Iran (1964) Unity Fighters:
  • State Flag of Iran (1964-1980) Pehlavi Dynasty
  • Flag of Iran (1964) Iran Democratic Fighters

Foreign Support:

  • Flag of the United States United States
  • Flag of the United Kingdom United Kingdom
  • Flag of Turkey Turkey
  • Flag of Israel Israel
  • Flag of Jordan Jordan
  • Flag of Iraq (1991-2004)Iraq
  • Flag of Kurdistan Pershmerga
Flag of Iran Islamic Republic of Iran

Supported By:

  • Flag of Syria Syria
  • Flag of Libya (1977-2011) Libya
  • Flag of Kurdistan Kurdish Militants
  • Flag of Lebanon Jammoul
  • Flag of Palestine PLO
Flag of the Soviet Union Soviet Union

IB Tudeh Flag Iran Liberation Army

Iranian Civil War is the name of a conflict that lasted from 1981-1987. The cause of the conflict was the American assault on the embassy in Tehran, which led to Iran executing several hostages. Most were freed by American ground forces. America had taken control of Tehran and most of Iran within a year, but foreign powers had begun expressing their own interests. 



After the American Victory in Tehran, the United States enlisted the help of several Arab Nations. In Iraq, Saddam Hussein had feared that the Shiite Muslims would revolt and had concerns over territorial disputes. American Forces were out of Iran and had mostly returned to the United States, with some stationed in the newly created Persian Command Center in Saudi Arabia. 

President Reagan invited Saddam Hussein to the white house, to discuss relations as well as formal support for Iraq. The United States sent arms to Iraqi soldiers and the Soviet Union, which also reached out to Iraq, sent Aircraft.

Surpise AttackEdit

Iraq launched a full-scale invasion of Iran on September 22, 1980. The Iraqi Air Force launched surprise air strikes on ten Iranian airfields with the objective of destroying the Iranian Air Force and allowing an American Advance. The attack damaged some of Iran's airbase infrastructure, but failed to destroy a significant number of aircraft: the Iraqi Air Force was only able to strike in depth with a few MiG-23BN, Tu-22, and Su-20 aircraft. Three MiG-23s managed to attack Tehran, striking its airport, but destroyed only a few aircraft

The next day, Iraq launched a ground invasion along a front measuring 644 km (400 mi) in three simultaneous attacks. The invasion's purpose, according to Saddam, was to blunt the edge of Khomeini's movement and to thwart his attempts to export his Islamic revolution to Iraq and the Persian Gulf states. Saddam hoped that by annexing Khuzestan, he would send such a blow to Iran's prestige that it would lead to the new government's downfall, or, at the very least, end Iran's calls for his overthrow.

Of Iraq's six divisions that were invading by ground, four were sent to Khuzestan, which was located near the border's southern end, to cut off the Shatt al-Arab from the rest of Iran and to establish a territorial security zone. The other two divisions invaded across the northern and central part of the border to prevent an Iranian counterattack. Two of the four Iraqi divisions, one mechanised and one armoured, operated near the southern end and began a siege of the strategically important port cities of Abadan and Khorramshahr.

The other two divisions, both armoured, secured the territory bounded by the cities of Khorramshahr, Ahvaz, Susangerd, and Musian. On the central front, the Iraqis occupied Mehran, advanced toward the foothills of the Zagros Mountains, and were able to block the traditional Tehran–Baghdad invasion route by securing territory forward of Qasr-e Shirin, Iran.

American Forces eventually joined them, Attacking Iran from several different locations from the North and South.

On the northern front, the Iraqis attempted to establish a strong defensive position opposite Suleimaniya to protect the Iraqi Kirkuk oil complex. U.S. forces joined Iraqi Soldiers, hoping to form a line of defense. The US and Iraq had hoped to start a uprising by the ethnic Arabs of Khuzestan, but such plains failed to materialise, as most of the ethnic Arabs remained loyal to Iran. Though the Iraqi air invasion surprised the Iranians, the Iranian air force retaliated with a desperate attack against Iraqi military bases and infrastructure in Operation Kaman 99 (Bow 99). Groups of F-4 Phantom and F-5 Tiger fighter jets attacked targets throughout Iraq, such as oil facilities, dams, petrochemical plants, and oil refineries, and included Mosul Airbase, Baghdad, and the Kirkuk oil refinery. Iraq, however, responded by attacking Iranian Shipping Ports and American Airstrikes knocked out Mashhad Air Force Base.

Birth of an UprisingEdit

In November, Iranian Resistance Fighters known as the Iran Democratic Fighters, formed from the National Front and American-Supporters, joined the US and Iranian Forces, hoping to oust the Government of Iran and for the formation of a republic.