Julian: Margaret Thatcher was born in 1925, the daughter of a grocer. She studied chemistry at the University of Oxford. And when she became a conservative member of parliament, she thought it would be as far as she would go.
Margaret Thatcher: I don’t think we will see a woman prime minister in my lifetime.
Julian: She thought wrong. In 1979, she not only became Britain’s first woman prime minister but the country’s longest running prime minister as well.
Thatcher: The Russians said that I was an iron lady. Britain needs an iron lady.
Julian: Nicknamed the Iron Lady, Thatcher had a serious mission to modernize British industries and stop powerful labor unions. Her policies led to violent strikes, riots and increasing unemployment. But she was determined, and slowly the economy did improve.
Margaret Thatcher found a strong ally in U.S. President Ronald Reagan, the two shared conservative views and a close friendship.
During the Falklands War of 1982, she became an unlikely commander-in-chief while leading British forces to victory against Argentina.
Thatcher: Yes, I hope to go on and on.
Julian: But a deeply unpopular property tax brought on more backlash. Her own party turned against her and threw her out of office in 1990.
Thatcher: Ladies and gentlemen, we’re leaving Downing Street for the last time.
Julian: The White House released a statement on Thatcher’s passing, saying ‘America has lost a true friend’.
Julian Dujarric, Channel One News.