Throughout the 1970s, multiple world-changing events occured.
Richard Nixon came to be the first president who was tried for impeachment since Andrew Jackson, becoming a public spectacle worldwide.
The Equal Rights Amendment passed through Congress, however even after having passed was not ratified, dissapointing many equal rights activists.
The Cold War was continually waged, with there being an ebb and flow to the intensity of international tension.
Iran went through a national revolution, experiencing great change.
Richard Nixon's resignation
On August 8, 1974, Richard Nixon publically resigned from his elected role as president of the United States.
More than two years before, on 1972 June 17, a security guard had noticed a lock blocked from locking by a piece of tape.
He removed this tape, only to find it replaced soon after. ( source )
After having noticed this, he called police to investigate.
This event came to be known as the Watergate break-in.
An image of the stairwell in which the disabled door lock was found.
( source )
Since then, Richard Nixon and his conspirators were on a mad-dash to conceal both their involvement and intent.
"I can say categorically that ... no one in the White House staff, no one in this Administration, presently employed, was involved in this very bizarre incident."
Despite Richard Nixon having said such, he was not ruled out as a suspectedly involved individual.
Nixon knew this, and so continued going out of his way to make his involvement unclear.
According to John Dean in his book "The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It":
"Nixon's conversations in late March and all of April 1973 revealed that not only did he know he needed to remove Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Dean to gain distance from them, but he had to do so in a way that was least likely to incriminate him and his presidency. Nixon created a new conspiracy—to effect a cover-up of the cover-up—which began in late March 1973 and became fully formed in May and June 1973, operating until his presidency ended on August 9, 1974."
On April 17, he fired John Dean, a member of the White House Council, whose legal cooperation with federal government representatives had led to Nixon's further implication.
On April 30, he had two of his advisors, Harry Haldeman and John Ehrlichman, remove themselves from their positions.
This was apparently done so as to further obfuscate any involvement in the Watergate break-in, as these advisors had both been involved in the break-in and implicated by federal government representatives to have been involved.
According to Time Magazine's "Sequels: Nixon: Once More, with Feeling":
'Ehrlichman, writing for New York and New West magazines from a federal prison camp in Arizona,' . . . 'added that just before Nixon fired him, he "offered me a huge sum of money. I declined it."'
1973 July 13, a White House assistant named Andrew Butterfield revealed the recording of conversations within the Oval Office and other rooms within the White House.
According to United Press International, the following testimony occured:
Fred Thompson: "Mr. Butterfield, are you aware of the installation of any listening devices in the Oval Office of the President?"
Alexander Butterfield: "I was aware of listening devices, yes, sir."
Fred Thompson: "When were those devices placed in the Oval Office?"
Alexander Butterfield: "Approximately the summer of 1970; I cannot begin to recall the precise date. My guess, Mr. Thompson, is that the installation was made between -- and this is a very rough guess -- April or May of 1970 and perhaps the end of the summer or early fall 1970."
Both Archibald Cox, a dedicated investigator of the scandal, and the Senate asked for copies of the tapes resulting from such recording.
According to United Press International, Richard Nixon refused both parties.
After more than a year of slow development of the situation, a taped recording of Richard Nixon admitting his obfuscation of the break-in was released.
This tape came to be known as the "Smoking Gun" tape, for it absolutely incriminated Richard Nixon as having obstructed justice.
This became a great public spectacle, with Richard Nixon's impeachment becoming all but certain.
According to The Washington Post:
"His Republican support on Capitol Hill had all but evaporated, Nixon was told by Mr. Rhodes, Senate Minority Leader Hugh D. Scott Jr. (Pa.) and Sen. Barry M. Goldwater (Ariz.). It was virtually certain, they said, that the House would vote to impeach him and that the Senate would convict him on charges related to the 1972 break-in at the national Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate."
As a result of this proposed inevitability, Richard Nixon chose to resign from his office.
Letter of Resignation( source )
Equal Rights Amendment
The Equal Rights Act is an amendment that was and continues to be proposed to Congress.
For many activists concerned with gender equality, it would represent absolute equality country-wide.
The following are it's statements: ( source )
"Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.
"Sec. 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
"Sec. 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification."
Since 1921( source ), this amendment has been introduced to Congress many times.
In 1972, the Equal Rights Amendment was passed in Congress, with it then needing to become ratified by a two-thirds majority of the United States within 7 years in order to take legal effect( source ).
35 of the 38 minimum states ratified the Equal Rights Amendment within those 7 years.
Both Congress and the then-current President of the United States Jimmy Carter extended the ratification period of the Equal Rights Amendment to 10 years in total( source ).
Despite this, still only those 35 states ratified the amendment, leaving it to require once-again passing through Congress to ever be chosen for ratification again.
According to https://www.equalrightsamendment.org/the-equal-rights-amendment:
"The ERA was reintroduced in Congress on July 14, 1982, and has been before every session of Congress since that time."
Cold War Continuation
All throughout the 1970s, the Cold War continued to be waged.
The Strategic Arms Military Talks, specifically SALT II, served as at the very least proof that both sides wanted peace( source ).
According to history.state.gov:
"On June 17, 1979, Carter and Brezhnev signed the SALT II Treaty in Vienna. SALT II limited the total of both nations’ nuclear forces to 2,250 delivery vehicles and placed a variety of other restrictions on deployed strategic nuclear forces, including MIRVs."
Just as well, the Vietnam War was continued for the first five years of the decade.
Throughout the early 1970s, Richard Nixon attempted a plan now known as "Vietnamization", wherein the United States military would fund and train South Vietnamese forces.
During this time, the United States' government began removing itself from involvement in the war.
According to "Vietnam: A History" by Stanley Karnow, more than 400000 American military personnel had been removed from Vietnam as of early 1972.
According to "America's Longest War: The United States and Vietnam, 1950-1975", there were no more United States personnel intentionally left there by the United States' government as of 1973 March.
As of 1975 April 30, South Vietnam's captial city Saigon was overtaken by North Vietnamese forces, marking the effective end of the Vietnam War.
While SALT II and the end of the Vietnam War somewhat lessened tensions between the United States and Soviet Union, the Soviet Union's involvement in what is now known as the Soviet-Afghan War increased international tensions further still.
The Soviet Union naturally assisted the newly ruling People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan.
Just as naturally, the United States secretly supported Afghan rebels. ( source: Conor Tobin's 'The Myth of the "Afghan Trap": Zbigniew Brzezinski and Afghanistan, 1978-1979' )
As a result of this war, the then-current President of the United States Jimmy Carter withdrew the agreements of SALT II from being ratified, in practice invalidating the signed treaty.
By the time the 1970s came to an end and the 1980s came to begin, Cold War tensions were greeater than when the 1970s began.
A multitide of factors resulted in the Iranian Revolution of 1979.
Perhaps foremost was the generally negative popular opinion of the current ruler.
During 1971's October, the "2,500th Year of the Foundation of the Imperial State of Islam" was held.
This celebration was very much intentionally extravagant.
According to Robin Wright's "The Last Great Revolution: Turmoil And Transformation in Iran":
( source )
'Under massive yellow-and-white tents, presidents and princes from sixty-nine countries drank premiere class French wine out of Baccarat crystal and feasted on Caviar and roast quail catered by Maxim's in Paris.
At a cost of at least $200 million, the celebration was billed as "the greatest gathering of heads of state in history."'
That account of the cost is somewhat disputed, as the Iranian Ministry of the Court claimed the cost to be $17 million.
According to that same book:
"The Persepolis fete, however, came at a time of drought in the provinces of Baluchistan and Sistan, as well as in Fars, where the celebration was held.
As the foreigners reveled on drink forbidden by Islam, Iranians were not only excluded from the festivities, some were starving."
The current ruler further disrespected the popular religion of Iran by intentionally discarding the recognition of the Islamic lunar calendar in favor of recognizing the crowning of Cyrus the Great as the first year to count from.
Iran's success as an exporter of oil had proven disastrous for the country itself, as it caused the econonmy of the country to be very inflationary.
According to macrotrends.net, the inflation rate of Iran's currency was 11.26% as of 1976.
As of 1977, that inflation rate had become 27.29%.
Subsequenty, the inflation rate of Iranian currency rose and fell, going as low as 10.49% as of 1979 and as high as 20.64% as of 1980.
According to James Gelvin's "The Modern Middle East", the shah had gained about $1,000,000,000 from the success of the country as an oil exporter.
His family had in total $3 billion in assests as a result of this profiteering.
According to Baqer Moin's "Khomeini: Life of the Ayatollah", a political party named "Rastakhiz" was declared the only legal political party, with all citizens expected to both ideally and financially support this party.
1975 June 5 marks what may be considered the first protest of the Iranian Revolution, known as the Qum Protest of 1975.
The following occured, according to Charles Kurzman's "The Qum Protests":
( source )
"On the eve of 5 June 1975, the anniversary of violently repressed protests in 1963, seminary students gathered for commemorative services Fayziyah Seminary in Qum, Iran, and raised chants for Ayatullah al-'Uzma (Great Sign of God) Ruhullah Khomeini.
This was a significant event, as public mention of Khomeini, the leader of the 1963 protests, had been banned since he was exiled in 1964."
. . .
"Security forces, apparently prepared for such an event, surrounded
the seminary and prevented the students from taking their demonstration
to the streets. Into the evening and throughout the next days, with crowds
supportive of the protestors gathering around the seminary, security forces
lobbed tear gas into the courtyard and alternately ordered the students out
and forced them with a water cannon to stay in."
A few years later, the Qum Protest of 1978 occured.
'On 7 January 1978, Ittila'at [The news], an afternoon newspaper in Tehran, published an insulting profile of Khomeini by a pseudonymous author.
''These days,'' the article began, ''thoughts turn once again to the colonialism of the black and the red, that is to say, to old and new colonialism.''
The alliance of the black and the red went looking for a clerical mouthpiece two decades ago, the article continued, in order to dupe the devout.
When the plot ''proved unsuccessful with the country’s high-ranking scholars, despite special enticements,'' there was only one man left for the job.
''Ruhollah Khomeini was an appropriate agent for this purpose,'' the article said, making a rare reference to Khomeini in the Iranian press since his exile in 1964.'
'In the late afternoon, security forces set up two trucks as a roadblock
outside a police station. When the marchers reached the roadblock, a police
commander ordered them to clear the sidewalks. The demonstrators were
starting to comply when someone--police officials claimed it was protesters; protesters claimed it was provocateurs
--threw stones through a nearby bank window, providing an excuse for security forces
to attack the crowd with batons.'
'Five people died in the event, according to a prorevolutionary research institute that had every interest in inflating the number of casualties'
This event came to be the straw that broke the country's back.
For the next several months, Iran would be experiencing an ebb and flow of protests.
As of 1978 October, people who usually worked any and all jobs all across the country were on strike( source ).
A protester hands a flower to a soldier( source )
Amongst the Shah's army's own ranks, there was much confusion and some mutiny.
Naturally, when the Shah left for Egypt in 1979 January, they were left confused even moreso.
According to Michael Eisenstadt's "Iran's Islamic Revolution: Lessons From the Arab Spring of 2011?":
( source )
"The Shah's departure effectively meant the end of his regime.
Iran's senior military leaders could not decide what to do: continue to support Prime Minister Bahktiar's government, throw their support behind Islamic opposition, or launch a coup and impose military rule."
All the while, the exiled symbol of the revolution
"Ayatollah Khomeini left his exile in France to return to Tehran on February 1, 1979, where he was greeted by more than 3 million people.
The military made no attempt to block his return."
In Iran, there then existed two governments: what remained of the government of the previous Shah, and the popular Khomeini's appointment of Mehdi Bazargan as prime minister.
According to irdc.ir and Baquer Moin's translation of the content in Khomeini: Life of the Ayatollah, the following was said by Khomeini:
( content source translation source )
"[T]hrough the guardianship [Velayat] that I have from the holy lawgiver [the Prophet], I hereby pronounce Bazargan as the Ruler, and since I have appointed him, he must be obeyed. The nation must obey him. This is not an ordinary government. It is a government based on the sharia. Opposing this government means opposing the sharia of Islam ... Revolt against God's government is a revolt against God. Revolt against God is blasphemy."
Between 1979 February 1 and February 11 were the days in which the military yielded power and supporters of Khomeini's government took control.
The anniversary of this event is celebrated yearly, called the "Decade of Fajr".
According to rferl.org:
( source )
'The revolution itself was concluded 10 days after the return of Iran's main religious leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Khomeini returned on 1 February 1979, after 14 years in exile -- lastly in France -- and took control of the revolution. "Independence, Freedom, and Islamic Republic" were the slogans of the revolution.'