The 1950s and 1960s were a period of turbulence and repression in Iran. In 1953, Iranian monarch Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi staged a coup against the popular Prime Minister Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh and seized control of the country. He then used his secret police, the Savak, to silence all opposition groups.
It was in this era of oppression that Mohammad Hanifnejad, Saeid Mohsen and Ali Asghar Badizadegan founded the group that would later become the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) aka Mujahedin-e Khalq, the oldest and largest resistance movement in Iran. On September 6, 1965, these three Iranian intellectuals set out on a journey to bring freedom and democracy to Iran.