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  1. #1
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    A paper I wrote on US interference in Iran and the CIA overthrow of the government

    We have a lot of Persians on this site so I thought some might find this interesting. I wrote this a little while back and it is a bit of a long read but I think it is important for Americans in particular to understand the historical context and foreign policy of the US towards Iran. It helps one understand the current situation in Iran and how the United States has played a role. Anyway, it is worth the read if you want to know something about Iranian history in the past century and why relations between the US and Iran are the way they are (the numbers are footnotes, not included unless you really want the bibliography):

    "Covert Coup's:
    American Foreign Policy in Iran and the 1953 CIA coup d'etat"

    The 1953 coup d'etat of Iran was carried out principally by the United States as well as Great Britain. This forced change in government had a profound effect on the country leading to almost three decades of dictatorship by Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi who remained in power due to support from the United States. This 1953 Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) engineered coup would lead to a revolution in February of 1979 in which the United States backed leader Shah Pahlavi would himself be overthrown leading to the government in Iran today that is primarily anti-Western. The United States reaped large benefits during the period in which Mohammad-Reza Shah was in power primarily due to oil contracts. The United States was also able to prevent Iran from falling under the influence of the Soviet Union and thereby possibly becoming a Communist state. The intervention of the United States in Iran was largely driven by business interests regarding oil, eventually leading to a revolution in Iran creating a government deeply resentful of this intervention which even until today harbors resentment to the West because of the actions of United States on Iranian internal affairs.

    Prior to the coup, the British controlled the oil in Iran. They owned the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company which was the largest investment the British had overseas.1 This was a very lucrative business as oil had taken on ever increasing importance after World War II. A vital piece of the oil business in Iran was the Abadan Refinery which was the largest oil refinery in the world from its completion in 1912 and would remain one of the largest until 1988 when it was destroyed by Iraq.2 The use and control of this refinery by the British had many in Iran saying they were simply being exploited by British Imperialism. The government in Iran would take notice of this perceived exploitation and the Prime Minister, with great support of the people and the government, wished to negotiate conditions that would be more favorable to Iran. With the value and importance the Anglo-Iranian Oil company and the Abadan Refinery to the British, they were not willing to give up anything or even entertain negotiations with the Iranians.

    The Prime Minister of Iran at this time was Mohammad Mosaddegh, who had been democratically elected.3 It is important to note that he was democratically elected as the Iranian government during the period prior to the 1953 coup was a strong example of a democracy in the Middle East. Today, the United States invests heavily monetarily and militarily attempting to shape more than one Middle Eastern government into a democracy. There is a bit of irony in the United States overthrowing the most stable democracy in the Middle East in the 1950's only to struggle at great expense to get strong democratic foundations setup today. Part of the reason why the United States struggles with strong anti-American views is due to their deposition of Mosaddegh over the situation regarding the British and Iran's oil.

    Mosaddegh wished to nationalize Iran's oil.4 This did not sit well with the British who had developed Iran's oil infrastructure.5 The development of Iran's oil infrastructure by the British meant that the exports were primarily to Britain and primarily controlled by British companies. Mosaddegh felt that Iranians were getting very little in compensation from the British for their oil. This view was propagated by most in the government and the population of Iran after they saw that Aramco, the oil company in Saudi Arabia, was pressured by Saudi King Abdul Aziz Ibn Saud into splitting profits 50/50.6 The Saudi King was able to do this by threatening to nationalize his country's oil facilities. Additionally, The Venezuelan government of Romulo Galegos and Creole Petroleum would reach a similar compromise in 1943.7 The Iranians saw the success of the Saudis and Venezuelans in getting much more favorable deals with their oil companies and Mosaddegh employed a similar strategy with the British and the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company. Britain vigorously opposed offering more favorable oil concessions to the Iranians and were dismayed that Washington endorsed the 50/50 settlement between Aramco and Saudi Arabia.8 The United States fully supported the nationalization of the oil industry by Saudi Arabia and Iran. The reason for this was that the oil interests of the United States benefited from preventing the British from having sole domination. If the United States was supportive of nationalization, what changed?

    What changed was that the Truman administration was replaced by the Eisenhower administration. President Truman did not have any desire to take Iran's oil or overthrow the government for that matter.9 When Mosaddegh caught the British aggressively plotting to overthrow him in 1952, he shut down the British embassy and expelled all British diplomats from the country.10 The British asked Truman for help, but Truman sympathized with the Iranians. "Truman, however, sympathized viscerally with nationalist movements like the one Mossadegh led. He had nothing but contempt for oldstyle imperialists like those who ran Anglo-Iranian."11 Truman was not about to intervene and certainly did not want to go as far as overthrowing the government to establish a favorable situation for the British. Truman also saw the danger of using the Central Intelligence Agency to topple governments. At this point the CIA had never overthrown a government and if they happened to succeed, it might potentially lead to a domino affect of the CIA overthrowing governments all over the world that were not favorable to the United States, "Besides, the CIA had never overthrown a government, and Truman did not wish to set the precedent."12 Truman's fear would become reality in 1953 and the CIA would begin a long campaign of overthrowing governments after Iran all over the world.

    It would be Anglo-American cooperation that would make a coup d'etat in Iran possible. The Truman administration stated earlier they were against an overthrow. The Eisenhower administration certainly did not instantly or wholly embrace the idea. The way the argument had been presented up to this point was that Mosaddegh must be deposed because he dared to nationalize British property. There was not much, if any, support in Washington for going after someone because they nationalized British property. The coup would be sold differently to the Eisenhower administration as they were no different than the Truman administration in their view of not wishing to intervene based on what was best for the British. It would be Christopher Montague Woodhouse who would present a different argument to top CIA and State Department officials. He would write regarding his strategy for the future meetings, "Not wishing to be accused of trying to use the Americans to pull British chestnuts out of the fire" and "I decided to emphasize the Communist threat to Iran rather than the need to recover control of the oil industry.”13 This would be a much better channel for attempting to get official government support for intervention in Iran.

    Woodhouse was sent by the British to meet with these top officials in the United States. Representatives of clandestine operations of both the United States and Britain would meet and begin plotting about what to do with Iran. Woodhouse would persuade prominent members of the Eisenhower administration to move in the way he wanted by using anti-communist rhetoric. Woodhouse was able to muster support for what the British would call, "Operation Boot." 14Woodhouse was incredibly successful in being able to convince the members of the administration of the need for political change in Iran. He returned to Britain with strong, but informal, support for removing Mossadegh from power in Iran. It is important to note this plot took place even before Eisenhower officially took office. The parties involved believed it would not be proper to move on a plan to overthrow a government before the president was even sworn in. It almost seems that regardless of the thoughts of the president, everything was already framed. They simply were waiting as a formality for the inauguration.

    Why was playing upon the Red Scare so much more effective? Well, as the term "Red Scare" implies, there was great fear of the Communists during this time period. The United States was involved in a Cold War with the Soviet Union after the close of World War II in which both countries would compete for power and influence across the globe. A tense situation in Korea had erupted into what was basically a war in the early 1950's and the Communists would be pitted against the Democratic West. There would be many battles all over the globe that would be proxy wars between the United States and the Soviet Union. Iran could have potentially been another stage that the United States fought the Soviet Union upon. Furthermore, Iran shared a long border with the Soviet Union which made the intervention of the Soviet Union in Iran a very real possibility. Iran also had an active Communist party and a prime minister who was advocating nationalization which some saw as bringing the country toward Communism.

    Additionally, John Foster Dulles was the incoming secretary of state for the Eisenhower administration.15 He was considered a very fierce opponent of the Communists and the Soviet Union. The incoming CIA director, Allen Dulles, was also a staunch anti-Communist and also happened to the brother of John Foster Dulles.16 With two strong opponents to Soviet influence in positions of power that would be instrumental in pushing an overthrow of the government through, the Eisenhower administration proved a much better candidate to not only listen to proposals advocating intervention in Iran but also to act upon them. The British knew this and Woodhouse would contact the Dulles brothers with proposals on removing Mossadegh. When the British said they wanted to put someone who was, "pro-Western" in power in Iran, the Dulles brothers became very interested and very supportive of removing Mosaddegh.

    Days after the inauguration of Eisenhower, Loy Henderson, the American ambassador in Tehran, began searching for support from Iranians interested in overthrowing Mossadegh.18 Henderson would be instrumental in framing the view of the administration toward Iran and its leader. He would tell Washington that he believed that Mossadegh was unstable, emotional, prejudiced, and alluded to the idea that this was not the ally the United States needed. Henderson and George Middleton, the British Ambassador to Iran, were able to convince their respective governments that with Mossadegh remaining in power Iran was likely to fall to Communism. The Dulles brothers would do everything in their power to make sure Iran did not fall to the Communists.19 In this fashion, the American and British ambassadors were able to shape the foreign policy of the United States to leaning toward changing the government in Iran and rally support with the Dulles brothers acting behind the scenes. Henderson was able to generate considerable enthusiasm for removing Mossadegh. The policy of the United States became one that they could no longer approve of a government headed by Mossadegh and a successor government was necessary. These conclusions and positions were all conveyed to the CIA, where Allen Dulles was director and had already been aware of what was taking place. The only person who wanted to work with Mossadegh was president Eisenhower himself. It seems as if the president was not in a position to stop what was already in motion even though Eisenhower did not believe an overthrow of the government was necessary.20 He believed mediation would solve the problems which is not the position the British wanted him to take because Mosaddegh was intent on getting Iran a far more favorable oil deal from the British.

    As long as Eisenhower was optimistic to mediation or working things out with Mosaddegh regarding Iran, Britain, and the oil policies, going ahead without the support of the president of the United States would be difficult and dangerous. Misinformation was steadily fed to Eisenhower to convince him that Iran was destabilizing and would potentially fall to the Soviet Union.21 Eisenhower would eventually come to the conclusion that Iran was collapsing. The Dulles brothers, just waiting for the right moment to go forward with their plans, took Eisenhower's change in tone as a sign that he would not resist the coup. By the time Churchill and Eisenhower gave their official support, plans on how to go about the coup had already been made and put in motion. Mossadegh was unaware that American sentiment and foreign policy toward him and Iran had rapidly and decisively shifted. When Mossadegh asked for American help due to the changing political climate and pressure being put on him by the British and other Americans, Eisenhower responded that he should resolve his dispute with the British.22 The coup would proceed, with bumps in the road, but would succeed in overthrowing the government of Iran and removing Mossadegh from power.

    Iranians responded to the overthrow of the government in various ways. Some were generally upset with the way things had gone and wanted a new government. A few Iranians actually were communists.23 Most did not realize how they were being manipulated. Mossadegh would end up in prison for three years and under house arrest for the remainder of his life. Mossadegh would become a non-figure in Iran and lived out the rest of his life like a ghost. Public opinion after the coup was strong against the British. All the British wanted was to return to their old position controlling oil in Iran.24 However, Americans would take control of the oil after the coup. Iranians held 40 percent of the petroleum consortium, American companies held another 40 percent, and what was left over was divided up for Royal Dutch/Shell and Compagnie Francaise de Petroles.25

    It is often stated that oil is the driving force of motives of diplomacy of the United States in the Middle East and with all the evidence in favor of that view, it is difficult to come to a different conclusion. It would seem that the Red Scare was used to sell the government yet ultimately Iran's vast oil wealth was the prize. The British after all were the one's continually pushing for the removal of Mosaddegh due to not willing to negotiation a favorable profit split of the oil with Iran. Oil has been the source of prosperity and strife for Iran for some time. Winston Churchill referred to gaining control of Iran's vast oil wealth as, "A prize from fairyland beyond our wildest dreams."26 That statement was made by Churchill in 1920. It is impossible to not take oil into account regarding political moves in Iran, namely the US coup. The vast reserves are simply too large of a prize to ignore and far too tempting for countries that require large amounts of energy, such as the United States. The lengths the British and the Americans went to in order to sell and pull off the coup goes to show what a temptation Iran was. One so great and one that reaped such large rewards that the United States would begin to frequently engage in the regime changes of other countries based on the success they saw in Iran, even with countries that did not have such lucrative national resources. Stephen Kinzer in All the Shah's Men gives great support for his view that oil is a driving force for all those interfering in Iran's affairs in the 20th century.

    Mohammad Reza Shah, who took over rule after Mossadegh, would become increasingly dictatorial in the years following the coup.27 The Shah would create dissent with his grip on power and the incredible amount he spent on defense and weaponry.28 Iranian popular opinion would slowly begin to turn against the Shah for several reasons. As stated earlier, a tremendous amount of money from the oil revenue was being spent on weaponry and defense to the detriment of the basic needs of Iranians. Iran was making more money on oil than it ever had yet this wealth was being funneled into protecting the oil and the Shah rather than improving the living standards of the people. Secondly, the Shah would use a brutal secret police force known as SAVAK to silence dissenters and maintain control of the population.29 This police force was created by the suggestion of the British and the United States and would be trained by the CIA. It would be Norman Schwarzkopf Sr., father of General Norman Schwarzkopf Jr., who would train this police force under CIA guidelines.30 He would train this police force in intelligence gathering and surveillance techniques designed to keep an eye on and remove threats to the government. In September, 1954 it would find a destroy a communist party network in the Persian armed forces which reinforced that the Dulles brothers were correct in their fear of Communist involvement in Iran.31 The Shah would abuse this police force in the later years of his rule removing anyone that he saw as a threat to his power. Oddly enough, president Jimmy Carter in the 1970's would decry the Shah's use of SAVAK as a human rights abuse preventing the SAVAK from removing those moving against the Shah. Carter would tell the Shah not to use force yet this only exacerbated his downfall.

    The political climate would collapse in 1979 and the American influence and control of certain industries would come to an end after about 26 years. The Shah was forced to flee the country and the CIA was not able to put him back onto his throne. He would die a year later, a reviled man. The Shah and what many saw as a tyrannical reign resulting from the American and British inspired coup generated considerable "blowback." This is the main event that historians of the Iranian Revolution argue leads to hatred of the West, distrust, and radical ideas concerning dealing with the United States especially regarding the Middle East and oil.

    After the Shah was forced out, Iranians were able to show support for Mosaddegh once again. High schools were named after him, along with streets in Tehran and stamps.32 People were allowed to publicly gather in his name which they were not allowed to while the Shah was in power. Some argue that the support for Mosaddegh showed that the people supported a democratic government and wanted a return to democracy even though not every Iranian was a fan of Mossadegh. Iranians were fans of Iran and wanted what was best for their country. Unfortunately, It was those that opposed ideals similar to Mosaddegh that won out. Those in power would realize that calls for honoring Mosaddegh would inevitably lead to a return to his principles which challenged the government that took power after the revolution. This leads to the problem Iran has today as well as the issues the United States has with Iran. The people are not against democracy and there has been a growing movement wishing to return to Iran's past revolting against the oppressive regime currently in power. The United States makes its position clear that it does not approve of the current government in Iran and that it will not tolerate a nuclear Iran. Yet the United States helped overthrow a democratic Iran which sends a very mixed message. Does the United States care more about oil revenue or more about freedom and democracy? Which is it that truly influences American diplomacy? During the 1953 CIA coup, desires for lucrative oil contracts under the guise of preventing Iran from falling to the communists won out over a stable democracy. This makes the situation today all the more perplexing as the United States calls for a free Iran yet largely ignores its role in creating a radical Islamic nation whose government despises the West.

    The 1953 Central Intelligence Agency coup was a momentous occasion in world history. It changed the course of the world in many ways. The United States learned it had the power and influence to remove governments it saw as unfavorable to the United States. It also showed that when playing with the regimes of others unforeseen consequences going completely against the intended desire can take place quickly such as the Shah being deposed in only 26 years. Was 26 years of lucrative oil revenue really worth taking a democratic republic in the Middle East off its course? Was the Communist scare valid or one used simply to sell the proposal of overthrowing the Iranian government? These are questions historians will struggle to answer for eternity with certain details becoming more clear over the next few decades but what is clear is the United States played a decisive role compounded by oil interests in Iran during the past century. Governments that directly advocate regime change in other countries must be prepared to take responsibility for what happens in the future and use such power responsibly taking far more into account than just business interests. Hopefully, todays Iran will become what is best for the people of Iran.

  2. #2
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    The reason I moved it here is that I do not want Google to cache it or for someone to steal it and use it as their own paper not doing their work.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    The reason I moved it here is that I do not want Google to cache it or for someone to steal it and use it as their own paper not doing their work.

    too late! but i have to take out the fictional stuff and make it a bit more accurate Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by LostMarine Click here to enlarge
    too late! but i have to take out the fictional stuff and make it a bit more accurate Click here to enlarge
    I think you in particular would benefit by reading it.

    Feel free to let me know if I made any mistakes in my research...

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    lol, i didnt actually read it yet Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by LostMarine Click here to enlarge
    lol, i didnt actually read it yet Click here to enlarge
    I know, do it.

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    You forgot the part about the camel humping.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  8. #8
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    You forgot the part about the camel humping.
    Click here to enlarge

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    Camel is loving it.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  10. #10
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    Sophisticated group we have here.

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    LOLL WUT U SAI ??/ IZ IRAN LYKE A CONTRY OR SOM SHT?T

    AMERCA RULEZ!!!1
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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    you jew dbfiu lol

    good paper, i like it. Down with the Islamic Republic
    i was wondering where you found the info about the shah using oil money on defense and weapons.
    Last edited by shahsk; 12-20-2010 at 03:47 PM.

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    I'm guessing no one has actually read it? I hate you people.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    I'm guessing no one has actually read it? I hate you people.
    i read it haha

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    Tldr but I'll read it some other time.

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    Click here to enlarge
    Click here to enlarge

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    As far as I can tell, the consensus within my family is that life under the Shah was pretty good. It was the violent revolution that ousted him that created the huge Iranian population in the USA and elsewhere, nobody wants to live under the Islamic Republic that exists now.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Remonster Click here to enlarge
    As far as I can tell, the consensus within my family is that life under the Shah was pretty good. It was the violent revolution that ousted him that created the huge Iranian population in the USA and elsewhere, nobody wants to live under the Islamic Republic that exists now.
    Life under the Shah was pretty good for a group of Iranians. It was not good for all Iranians.

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    Nice sticky! If you remember the zeitgeist link I posted on the wikileaks thread, this topics comes up with the same domino effect you speak of where the US gov't does the same to other regimes/gov'ts/ruling authorities or bodies.
    Click here to enlarge
    Current:
    2010 CTS-V Sedan

    Previous:
    2007 e92 335i

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by alq80 Click here to enlarge
    Nice sticky! If you remember the zeitgeist link I posted on the wikileaks thread, this topics comes up with the same domino effect you speak of where the US gov't does the same to other regimes/gov'ts/ruling authorities or bodies.
    Unfortunately, Iran became justification for the US overthrowing governments left and right. Prior to 1953, the United States never overthrew a government. After 1953... well, you know.

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    America in 1953: Hey guys, I'm bored.

    Australia: So? Go play in the sand or something.

    France: Le cheese?

    America: I want to overthrow some governments, like ones really far away. I think that's what we should do, we are uber powerful.

    Russia: $#@! your space program, MIG > F86 Sabre

    Belgium: America, please dont start overthrowing governments.

    America: $#@! it, we're invading Iran because they are being ruled by dicks.

    Iran: Say whaaa? BOOOOOOM.

    America: How's my cock taste?

    Iran: ALLLLLLAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!

    America: Yea take it, now start a civil war and bring in a new government. Cuba's next $#@!hhhesss...

    Portugal: Dam let's not $#@! with America, they are some badass mofos. They overthrow governments n shieeet.

    Amsterdam: I'm so high right now, I have no idea what's going on.

    America: Who should we overthrow next?

    Australia: I dunno man... Just dont go to thailand, your men will come back as women.

    The end.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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    Is that your essay? It's way better than Sticky's.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by e92 Click here to enlarge
    Is that your essay? It's way better than Sticky's.
    That was my PhD thesis.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    That was my PhD thesis.
    You earned it. But getting an online PhD from Mexico is tough, impressed.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    You earned it. But getting an online PhD from Mexico is tough, impressed.
    I got it from The Peoples Republic of Congo.








    I got my masters from mexico, lemme tell you; they make you a lot of tacos...
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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