Reason To Rejoice and Panic
January 5, 1954 — The Holland Evening Sentinel

The Mossadegh Project | March 15, 2015                     

This lead editorial in a Holland, Michigan newspaper about the fall of Mossadegh is rather bewildering.


One silly old man has been sent to prison in Iran. For the next three years Mohammed Mossadegh, former premier, will languish in a cell, and his Communist-inspired followers and associates will have their wings clipped.

All that is to the good, and the government at Washington is reported to be breathing easier because of the outcome of the Mossadegh trial. The weepy old fellow was so plainly a tool of the Kremlin that all lovers of human freedom have reason to rejoice that he has been put where he can do no more harm and that the government of the young monarch of Iran has been upheld.

But American lovers of human freedom have no cause to conclude that now all is well in Iran. Demagogues like Mossadegh did not get the upperhand in Iran because the people of that country are naturally hospitable to Red influences. They got the upper hand because the millions in Iran are so miserable that almost anything looks better to them than the life they are forced to face.

According to an American engineer who has lived for years in Iran, and who has no official or economic ax to grind, the arable land in Iran is owned by 300 families. The engineer set forth the facts, as he had seen them, in a national magazine of wide circulation. The conditions he described are so appalling that it is surprising that any plain man in Iran has resisted the Red invasion.

Those 300 families own not only the land; in an economic sense they own the people who work the land. Poverty and degradation, starvation and cold, are so great that comfortable Americans can’t so much as imagine them.

Under Point Four we sent to Iran not the simple things the people needed—mules and carts to take their stuff to market, simple farm tools that could actually be used on their simple farms—but tractors suited to thousand-acre holdings, “specialists” to instruct Iranian farmers how to use machines that could not operate on their stony, hilly acres.

The elimination of the demagogue Mossadegh is only an incident, almost an irrelevant incident. It settles nothing. Much more radical measures will be needed to save Iran from Communism.

The U.S.-Britain Alliance To Erase Mossadegh Was Not Inevitable
The U.S.-Britain Alliance To Erase Mossadegh Was Not Inevitable


Related links:

Iran Faces the Future | The Times Record, August 6, 1954

One Crisis Ridden Out | U.S. editorial, February 22, 1954

No Pity For Mossadegh | The Lethbridge Herald, September 24, 1953

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

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