Axis of Oil

August 28, 1953 — The Elmira Star-Gazette

The Mossadegh Project | June 20, 2015                     

Days after the 1953 coup in Iran, The Elmira Star-Gazette was amazingly open about U.S. self interest in that faraway land.

The Elmira, New York newspaper was a consolidation, as of July 1, 1907, of The Elmira Evening-Star (1888), The Elmira Gazette (1828), The Elmira Free Press (1878), and The Elmira Evening News (1894).

Iran and U.S.

THE TALK is usually about Iran and the USSR. Everybody knows Russia would like Persian oil, and so would Great Britain.

What may be less well known is that due to variations in costs of mining the earth, Iranian oil, although about 8,500 miles away from New York City, can be delivered there cheaper than oil from Texas. This means that the U.S. also should have an interest in Iran.

But the United States got caught on a bad gesture about a year ago. When Prime Minister Churchill talked tough to Premier Mossadegh, he got President Truman to sign his letter jointly. So when old Mossy declared he could not accept British terms he was rejecting American mediation also. The wily British Foreign Office got us involved so that if they burned their fingers, we would burn ours. At least, it looks that way.

So now we are not a party of disinterest in Persia, Even if the Shah, now returned to power, lets us lend him money, he and his people will be suspicious that we are London’s agent in trying to get the oil wells working for the West again.

American oil companies are shipping to the United States daily from that rich circle of 300 miles radius around Abadan where some 60 per cent of the world’s proven oil reserves are located. Let us hope the business representatives can do better in tying that resource to the West than the political maneuvers have done.

70th Anniversary of TIME’s 1951 Man of the Year


Related links:

Mossadegh Betrayed By Own Chicanery | The Elmira Star-Gazette, August 24, 1953

Aid For The Shah | August 28, 1953 editorial

Tudeh Newspaper “Shojat” Predicts Iran Coup Plot (Aug. 1953)

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

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