When Iran took the US embassy hostage, Bernie Sanders came out to support the terrorists behind the siege, not the US hostages themselves. During the crisis, he joined the Vermont Socialist Workers Party, a radical communist marxist political party, and ran for office. The party leader, Andrew Pulley, gave a speech at a socialist workers meeting that Sanders chaired. There at the meeting, Pulley and Sanders accused the US hostages of being likely CIA spies, and that the iranian people were simply rising up against US imperialism.
Pulley called out “Carter’s war drive against the Iranian people,” and then said that the United States “was on the brink of war with Iran,” which is being fought “to protect the oil and banking interests of the Rockefellers and other billionaires.” Americans would soon “pay on the battlefields with our very own lives.” The government criticism of the Ayatollah was intended “to get us ready for war.” And, Pulley claimed, the media who criticized those of us who were against “American imperialism” were “declared insane.” As for the hostages, Pulley said “we can be sure that many of them are simply spies… or people assigned to protect the spies.”