39th US president Jimmy Carter is terminally ill: US media
Former US President Jimmy Carter, who at 98 years old is the longest-lived American president, is terminally ill and has entered hospice care at his home in Plains, Georgia, US media reported on Saturday.
The Carter Center said in a statement that after a series of short hospital stays, the 39th US president “decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention.”
Carter was a little-known Georgia governor when he began his bid for the presidency ahead of the 1976 election. He went on to defeat then-President Gerald R. Ford, capitalizing as a Washington outsider in the wake of the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal that drove Richard Nixon from office in 1974.
Carter served a single, tumultuous term - from 1977 to 1981 - and was defeated by Republican Ronald Reagan in 1980, a landslide loss.
Carter’s re-election campaign splintered under double-digit inflation, gasoline lines and the US embassy takeover in Iran. His bleakest hour came when eight Americans died in a failed hostage rescue in April 1980, helping to ensure his landslide defeat.
On April 25, 1980, the US military launched a covert military operation, known as Operation Eagle Claw, in an attempt to airlift the US embassy staff held captive in the Iranian capital, Tehran.
However, a sandstorm hit and brought down the group of US military aircraft in the Tabas Desert, killing eight American servicemen and resulting in the failure of the mission.
Inspections showed a helicopter crashed into a C-130 Hercules transport plane as five other choppers were stranded in the storm.
On November 4, 1979, Carter issued the so-called “national emergency” against Iran, months after the victory of the Islamic Revolution that toppled the US-backed Pahlavi regime in Iran. The decree has been extended for 42 years by successive Republican and Democratic presidents in the US.