Remembrance of Glory Past?
October 16, 1951 — U.S. Editorial

The Mossadegh Project | September 18, 2020                    

An editorial on Iran, Egypt and the ephemeral nature of empires.

Mossadegh Before UN

When aging Premier Mossadegh of Iran presented the case of his country against the British to the United Nations Security Council on Monday, he must have been inspired by memories of its past greatness.

Persia (the name was changed to Iran in 1935) was once the hub of the civilized world. That was 25 centuries ago.

Persia then stood at the crossroads of trade between European and the East. And even though today Iran is internationally important primarily because of its oil, it still is geographically strategic in the itch of Russian communism to expand territorially and the determination of the West to prevent that expansion.

Egypt, like Iran, was once a great kingdom of the ancient world. Egypt also is now engaged in international discussions, asserting its sovereignty against British assumptions. The Egyptians, without liking for Russia or stomach for communism, nonetheless stand adamant against making any concessions to the West prior to evacuation of British troops from their territory.

A century ago, Egypt was too corrupt and disorganized to retain its share in the Suez Canal, on Egyptian soil. A half century ago, Persia was impotent to keep its oil deposits out of foreign hands.

Mossadegh’s appearance before the United Nations this week, like Egypt’s present conversations in Washington on full political sovereignty, is one more piece of evidence that the only thing permanent is change. The strong become weak. The weak are inspired to new strength and courage. The year 1951 is almost as different from 1901 and 1851 as from the BC era.

Newspapers who ran this editorial under their masthead included:

The Binghamton Press (Binghamton, New York) — Oct. 16, 1951 (title: Remembrance of Glory Past?)
The Greenville Delta Democrat Times (Greenville, Mississippi) — October 16, 1951*
The Delta Democrat-Times (Greenville, Mississippi) — October 16, 1951
Public Opinion (Chambersburg, Pennsylvania) — October 18, 1951 (title: “VISIONS OF PAST GREATNESS”)*
Ironwood Daily Globe (Ironwood, Michigan) — October 19, 1951*
The Baytown Sun (Baytown, Texas) — October 22, 1951*

* Some minor differences (“high memories of its past greatness”, etc.) and 7th sentence removed.


Related links:

Woes in the Near East | October 19, 1951 editorial

Mossadeq’s Mistiming | Barrier Daily Truth, December 12, 1951

Soviet Whets Knife for Iran Waif in U.N. | Ivan H. Peterman, October 2, 1951

MOSSADEGH t-shirts — “If I sit silently, I have sinned”

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