Supporters of the leader and founder of the Islamic revolution Ayatollah Khomeini hold his picture in Tehran during the country's revolution, February 1979.

Iran’s Islamic Revolution of 1979 turned violent almost immediately after the overthrow of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Dozens of top figures of the previous regime were captured, summarily tried, and executed by a firing squad, night after night, on the roof of a school where the leader of the revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, had taken residence in central Tehran.

The photographs of their bullet-riddled bodies, naked from the waist up, were published on the front pages of the newspapers. The message was clear: there was no going back to the previous era. The brutality shocked a nation previously unused to

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