A Moment of Optimism

September 3, 1952 — The Knickerbocker News

The Mossadegh Project | July 12, 2013                   

An editorial in The Knickerbocker News newspaper of Albany, New York.

Deal In Iran?

For the first time in many weeks, there is some optimism being expressed with regard to the Iranian oil situation. As of last Saturday it looked as though Premier Mossadegh, in rejecting a joint proposal from President Truman and Prime Minister Churchill, still was playing his role of an irreconcilable Anglophobe.

Information subsequently relayed from Tehran, however, seems to indicate that what the wily Mossadegh seeks is time for additional horse-trading, plus a more complete definition of the Anglo-American offer.

The Persian premier, for example, fears to take the case of payment for British property in Iran before the International Court of Justice for arbitration, as was suggested in the Truman-Churchill note. There is a chance that this court might hold Iran liable for all anticipated profits to the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company through 1993, which is the termination date for the contract unilaterally voided by Iran.

Moreover, he doesn’t want British technicians returning to Iran—a subject that is treated somewhat vaguely in the note. And, of course, he thinks maybe he can get more than the $10 million grant offered by the United States.

It would appear then, that Mossadegh is preparing to bargain, an impression which is strengthened by the fact that he has summoned the Iranian parliament [Majles] for a special session—thereby making his rejection of the Anglo-American offer something less than final.

If Mossadegh is ready to bargain—and certainly both sides have suffered enough as a result of the dispute to wish its end—then we have little doubt a deal can be struck.

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Related links:

Iran’s Break With BritainThe Binghamton Press, October 18, 1952

Iran and OilThe Times Record, August 26, 1952

Mossadegh Snarled in Twin DilemmaThe World This Week, September 6, 1952

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

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