The Price Of Oil

August 20, 1953 — Oakland Tribune

The Mossadegh Project | August 17, 2017                          

The 1953 coup in Iran

The day after the 1953 coup in Iran that overthrew Mossadegh, The Oakland Tribune in California published this celebratory, slanderous, redundant lead editorial.

Iran’s Shah Offers Principal Hope for Stability and of Frustrating Red Influence

Premier Mossadegh of Iran, having brought his country to the verge of bankruptcy and ruin, now is paying the price of his violently nationalistic policies.

The first great mistake that Mossadegh made was in his intransigent attitude toward the British in the controversy over Iran’s oil resources. Every effort was made by the United States to settle the dispute but the Iranian Government refused all reasonable offers. [Not so] To make matters worse Mossadegh tried to bargain with the Western nations by threatening to allow the Tudeh (communist party) to participate in the government. [A complete lie!] His irrational and emotional behavior alienated the Western diplomats who were unable to cope with his strange personality and, as a result, Iran was practically isolated from the international community. The second mistake was a clumsy attempt to extort money from the United States by threatening to give the communists a major role in the government if we did not furnish the amount of financial assistance that Mossadegh demanded. [They repeat the lie!] The Soviet Union made a clear and bold attempt to annex Azerbaijan, a semi-autonomous province which borders on Russia, and only through the influence of the United Nations was it frustrated. And it is only about seven years ago that Iran’s independence was saved through diplomatic intervention of the U.N. Security Council by forcing the Russians to withdraw their troops from the country.

Not all of these trouble of course can be charged to Mossadegh but he is largely responsible for the recent oil controversy and for the threats of communism. Iran, with its great petroleum deposits, is one of the richest prizes in the Middle East and, therefore, is a matter of international concern. But the deposed Premier has never displayed any serious consideration for the interests of the free world, as contrasted with those of the Soviet Union. The Shah apparently was forced to leave Iran because of the opposition posed by Mossadegh but it now appears obvious that the Army, backed by popular support, is in a position to return him to the throne. The real hope for stability in Iran and for an effective anti-communist movement lies in restoration of the monarchy. And we hope that this will be the effect of the present revolution. The Shah is an able and intelligent ruler who deserves the support of the Western nations and apparently has the loyalty of his people, regardless of what happens to a discredited Premier.


Related links:

Iran Wants U.S. Money As Price of Friendship | INS, August 27, 1953

Dismissal Of A Tiresome Old Man | The Danville Bee, August 20, 1953

An Ultimatum | Oakland Tribune, October 3, 1952

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

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