On 22 September 1980, the simmering conflict between Iraq and Iran erupted into a full-scale war with the simultaneous Iraqi air-raids on ten Iranian civilian and military airports and the invasion of Iranian territory along the entire border between the two countries. Prior to the outbreak of the war, relations between the two countries deteriorated steadily in the aftermath of the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran. This was due not only to personal hostility between Saddam Hussein of Iraq and Ayatollah Khomeini, but also, more importantly, due to the political ambitions of both states as well as ideological and territorial disputes. Ayatollah Khomeini, who had been living in exile in Iraq after 1963, was expelled from that country on 4 October 1978 at the request of the government of Mohammad Reza Shah following the outbreak of political disturbances in Iran.


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