Community Service
September 4, 1953 — The Commonweal

Arash Norouzi
The Mossadegh Project | September 13, 2013                   

The 1953 coup in Iran

The Commonweal is the oldest Catholic opinion journal in America. Founded in 1924, the weekly was modeled on political magazines like The New Republic and The Nation, but with additional cultural, religious and literary content from an independent Catholic perspective.

With apparent sincerity, the editors viewed the overthrow of Premier Mossadegh in 1953 as a wonderful turn of events, and insisted that the United States deliver immediate economic aid to the new coup regime.


LUCK cannot forever take the place of policy, and the past nine months of cold war have just about used up all the good luck the western nations can sanely expect to have for a long time to come. The events in Iran have been as implausible and melodramatic a reversal as has been seen since E. Phillips Oppenheim passed on.

Now the West has once more been given a new chance. The Zahedi government in Iran [Fazlollah Zahedi] will not be anglophile, but it may at least be expected to be realistic. It is anti-Communist; the counterrevolution took place, of course, because Mossadegh was on the verge of alliance with Russia. [not true] This is the time for America boldly and generously to give aid to the new government, and lay the ground for fresh and discreet negotiation to get the Iranian oil refineries once again in operation.

Zahedi and the Shah must immediately bring tangible improvements to the Iranian economy—the people are still restless and the Communists are still strong. The only way they can bring these improvements is with outside aid. The only way they can bring more permanent stability is by getting the oil refineries back to work. We have everything to gain by quickly and firmly helping them.

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


Related links:

Hopeful Developments in Trouble Spots | The Brooklyn Eagle, December 10, 1953

Editorial on Iran in Libertarian magazine The Freeman, July 30, 1951

Did U.S. and Britain Plan the Overthrow of Mossadegh? | Weekly People, August 29, 1953

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

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