[Story has been updated from the original story posted Dec. 8, 2018]
December 18, 1981: Fourteen Americans are taken hostage by pro-Iranian Islamist revolutionary students at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.
August, 1979: When Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returns from exile in Paris, Iran’s shah departs, ending nearly 40 years of US-Iranian relations. The shah’s successor, Maj. Gen. Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, brings Iran a prime minister named Reza Shah Pahlavi, the nation’s first non-Muslim monarch. He declares Iran Islamic Republic in June 1980.
January, 1981: Iran gains access to Soviet gas supplies.
June, 1981: A civil war breaks out in Afghanistan.
July, 1981: The shah’s army and family leave Iran. He subsequently makes a brief visit to the United States.
December, 1983: An American hostage arrives in Iran.
January, 1984: Two American hostages are released. The remaining 12 are freed in March, 1984.
February, 1985: Two more U.S. hostages are released.
March, 1985: Eleven more Americans are released.
April, 1986: All American hostages released.
August, 1986: Iran ends its agreement with the United States to sell arms to the shah. It officially is declared to be a client state of the United States.
May, 1987: Iran launches a disinformation campaign to discredit the United States.
January, 1987: Four additional Americans are released.
February, 1987: Eight more Americans are released.
March, 1987: A November 1987 meeting between President Ronald Reagan and Iran’s leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini is scrapped.
June, 1987: Iran withdraws from the US-brokered agreement that handed it the return of the hostages. It befriends Iraq.
January, 1988: Shiite militias invade the Kurdish city of Halabja in Iraq’s north. Iran says it stopped the attack.
March, 1988: Iraq fires on a rebel military camp near the Iraqi city of Khorramshahr and kills 68 people. There are conflicting accounts of who fired the missile. Iran says it supported Saddam’s regime in the war.
May, 1988: In an incident said to have been triggered by an incursion by Sunni Muslim rebels in northern Iran, Iraqi warplanes bomb a Revolutionary Guards camp in southwestern Iraq, killing dozens.
November, 1988: Tehran and Baghdad break off diplomatic relations.
February, 1989: Another 20 Americans are released.
October, 1989: Iraqi bombs kill 182 Revolutionary Guards near the town of Jimani. Iran claims Iraqi planes carried out the attack.
March, 1990: In the month-long Iran-Iraq war, which began on Aug. 20, 1990, more than 360,000 people are killed.
August, 1991: America withdraws from its Iranian military bases and closes its embassy in Tehran. The shah dies.
March, 1992: Iran does not sign a nuclear deal it had proposed with the US. The US suspends $4.2 billion in aid to Iran.
January, 1996: Iraq attacks U.S. forces in Kuwait; at least 19 Americans are killed. It is not clear whether the Iraqis were acting on Iranian intelligence.
June, 1995: Iraq, in its deadliest attack on US forces, kills 260 at Forward Operating Base Qasr in Kuwait, in retaliation for the killing of Iraqi officers by U.S. forces.
July 1996: Iraq attacks Israeli tourists in Israel; 241 are killed in the worst air strike against Israeli civilians.
November, 1998: Iraq fires Scud missiles toward the US and Israel in retaliation for US support for the Gulf War.
December, 1998: Iraq’s army crushes Iraq’s Kurdish peshmerga forces in the north.
October, 1999: Pahlavi changes his official title to “patriarch” in a gesture of homage to the shah.
June, 2003: Saddam’s government annexes Kuwait, taking control of much of the oil-rich emirate.
August, 2003: Iraq withdraws from the OPCW over Iraq’s alleged weapons of mass destruction programs, and UN chief weapons inspector David Kay says he has found no evidence of weapons of mass destruction. The U.S. invasion ends Saddam’s rule and Saddam himself is executed.
May, 2003: Attacks on U.S. forces in Afghanistan are the most deadly attack on coalition forces in Afghanistan to date.
December 2003: Americans invade Iraq.
April 4, 2005: The National Archives releases the 3.5 million pages of former Iran President Abolhassan Bani-Sadr’s papers to the Bani-Sadr family.
December 2009: The United States recognizes Afghanistan’s Ashraf Martyrs’ Complex as sovereign territory.