On April 30, 1980, a group of six Iranian terrorists stormed the Iranian Embassy in London and took the diplomatic staff and several bystanders hostages.

The hostage-takers were members of an obscure Arab terrorist organization who opposed Ayatollah Khomeini and wanted Iran to give autonomy to Arabistan, or Khuzestan Province, a small but oil-rich province in southwest Iran.

Their intrusion began an ordeal that would end with a spectacular raid by the U.K.’s top special operations unit, the Special Air Service (SAS), on May 5.

In a first, the rescue was captured on live television, giving the SAS, which was created during World War II, newfound fame.