A Mystifying Situation

March 2, 1953 — The Times Record

The Mossadegh Project | July 1, 2013                    

Lead editorial in The Times Record newspaper of Troy, New York, soon after the No’he Esfand episode in Iran. Their front page that day had the top headline: Tehran Mobs Stone American Homes.


Admittedly the situation in Iran is confusing. Mobs are rioting in the streets, denouncing Premier Mossadegh and acclaiming the Shah at one moment and a little later hailing the Premier and assailing his opponents. Even the origin of the outbreaks is mystifying, for Mossadegh denies that the Shah intended to abdicate and go into exile. The proposed departure may have been for the purpose of obtaining medical care.

In such circumstances few things are clear. But it is plain that the oil-rich and poverty-stricken country is in grave danger of falling into the hands of the Soviet Union. The Communists in Iran are taking part in the rioting and their chances of gaining control are multiplied by prolonged disorders.

Another thing that stands out in the confusion is the utter selfishness of the Premier and his principal opponent of the moment, Ayatollah Kashani, Moslem religious leader and Parliament Speaker. These former allies have quarreled and now they are contending for power. The Shah is but a figurehead although he appears to be popular with the people.

Between them, Mossadegh and Kashani long ago managed to strip the Shah of command of the armed forces and impose what amounts to palace arrest. In their greed for power, the rivals are dragging their country to the brink of disaster. They are playing into the hands of the Soviets who watch the wrecking process and wait to pick up the pieces.

SAFER AT HOME: U.S. Implores Shah To Stay In Iran (Feb. 1953)
SAFER AT HOME: U.S. Implores Shah To Stay In Iran (Feb. 1953)

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Related links:

New Peril In Persia | Elmira Star-Gazette (NY), April 10, 1953

Breakdown of Iran Oil Talks Stir Riots Against MossyAP, March 3, 1953

Mossadeq Wants Monarchy To StayThe Indian Express, April 7, 1953

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

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