Conspiracy Theory No More: State Dept. Finally Admits The US Gov’t Planned 1953 Iranian Coup

By Rachel Blevins

The State Department has released a trove of documents that give insight into the CIA’s role in the 1953 coup d’état that led to the overthrow of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadeq.

The newly declassified documents, titled “Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954, Iran, 1951–1954,” provide a notable difference from the State Department’s 1989 version of the coup, which left out any involvement from American and British intelligence.

A memorandum from Director of Central Intelligence Allen Dulles to President Eisenhower, dated March 1, 1953, serves as a reminder that internally, “the elimination of Mossadeq by assassination or otherwise,” was used as a method in repairing ties with Iran, restoring oil negotiations, and stopping a “Communist takeover.”

Ever since the assassination of General Razmara in March 1951, and the subsequent impasse and diplomatic break with Britain over the oil negotiations, the Iranian situation has been slowly disintegrating. The result has been a steady decrease in the power and influence of the Western democracies and the building up of a situation where a Communist takeover is becoming more and more of a possibility. However, even the present crisis is likely to be unsatisfactorily compromised without a Communist Tudeh victory. Of course, the elimination of Mossadeq by assassination or otherwise might precipitate decisive events except in the unlikely alternative that the Shah should regain courage and decisiveness.

Another memorandum from the CIA, dated March 3, 1953, detailed the “Capabilities of CIA clandestine services in Iran,” which could be used to “prevent the assumption of power by Tudeh,” Iran’s Communist party.

The list included mass propaganda means; personal denunciations and rumor spreading; street riots, demonstrations, and mobs; and providing assistance in Iran “After Tudeh Take-Over.”

Mass propaganda means (press, etc.): CIA controls a network with numerous press, political, and clerical contacts which has proven itself capable of disseminating large-scale anti-Tudeh propaganda.

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While the conversations initially supported Mossadeq as Iran’s prime minister, the tone soon changed, and a memorandum from the CIA, dated March 18, 1953, noted that top State Department officials had begun discussing “The general subject of Mossadeq’s continuance in office.”

Gist of discussion was to effect that situation has materially altered since December. While there is no obvious choice in sight to replace Mossadeq it is felt that any assets which could be rallied to support a replacement should, if at all possible, he preserved for at least a few months more until the course of events may be clarified.

In addition to its array of “services” listed above, that were used to control the situation in Iran, the CIA also advised the soon-to-be leaders. In a memorandum, dated August 14, 1953, the CIA detailed a meeting with Fazlollah Zahedi, the Iranian general who would become Mossadeq’s replacement.

Earlier meeting with Zahedi showed him firm of purpose but inhabiting dream world so far as his subsequent program concerned. Spoke of free medical care for the third class citizens, mechanizing agriculture and growing vast crops of cotton on Moghan Steppes, equalizing wealth by income taxes, etc. Time [is] not right for us to argue issue but we [are] warning strongly against making impossible promises in early speeches. It [is] clear Zahedi will need firm, realistic guidance.

In a memorandum, dated August 17, 1953, the CIA revealed its attempts to control public opinion after the coup, by telling Kermit Roosevelt, the director of the operation, that the State advised its “press relations people” to stay away from terms such as “coup d’état” and “plot,” while working to convince the public that if there was a coup, it was on behalf of Mossadeq—not Zahedi.

Roosevelt should be advised that State has passed the word to VOA and instructed its own press relations people to avoid any such terminology as ‘coup d’état,’ ‘plot,’ etc., and that while playing the story ‘straight’ they should play up the fact that there is another version of the story supported by both Zahedi and now the Shah which indicates that if there was any coup d’état it was that of Mossadegh and not of Zahedi.

The archive includes nearly 1,000 pages of documents, and while it is significant in framing the stage for today’s relations between the United States and Iran, it also important based on the fact that it is information the U.S. has attempted to bury.

The idea that the CIA would meddle in a sovereign nation, work to overthrow its government, and then influence public perception, is nothing new in 2017. And yet, despite years of revelations, regime-change wars and failed proxy governments, there is still a perception among the American people that the government interfering with countries that have done nothing to the U.S. is all in the name of “freedom.”

Rachel Blevins is a Texas-based journalist who aspires to break the left/right paradigm in media and politics by pursuing truth and questioning existing narratives. This article first appeared here at The Free Thought Project.


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8 Comments on "Conspiracy Theory No More: State Dept. Finally Admits The US Gov’t Planned 1953 Iranian Coup"

  1. The indiscriminate use of bombs by the US, usually outside a declared war
    situation, for wanton destruction, for no military objectives, whose
    targets and victims are civilian populations, or what we now call
    “collateral damage.”

    Japan (1945)
    China (1945-46)
    Korea & China (1950-53)
    Guatemala (1954, 1960, 1967-69)
    Indonesia (1958)
    Cuba (1959-61)
    Congo (1964)
    Peru (1965)
    Laos (1964-70)
    Vietnam (1961-1973)
    Cambodia (1969-70)
    Grenada (1983)
    Lebanon (1983-84)
    Libya (1986)
    El Salvador (1980s)
    Nicaragua (1980s)
    Iran (1987)
    Panama (1989)
    Iraq (1991-2000)
    Kuwait (1991)
    Somalia (1993)
    Bosnia (1994-95)
    Sudan (1998)
    Afghanistan (1998)
    Pakistan (1998)
    Yugoslavia (1999)
    Bulgaria (1999)
    Macedonia (1999)

    US Use of Chemical & Biological Weapons
    The US has refused to sign Conventions against the development and use of
    chemical and biological weapons, and has either used or tested (without
    informing the civilian populations) these weapons in the following
    locations abroad:

    Bahamas (late 1940s-mid-1950s)
    Canada (1953)
    China and Korea (1950-53)
    Korea (1967-69)
    Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia (1961-1970)
    Panama (1940s-1990s)
    Cuba (1962, 69, 70, 71, 81, 96)

    And the US has tested such weapons on US civilian populations, without
    their knowledge, in the following locations:

    Watertown, NY and US Virgin Islands (1950)
    SF Bay Area (1950, 1957-67)
    Minneapolis (1953)
    St. Louis (1953)
    Washington, DC Area (1953, 1967)
    Florida (1955)
    Savannah GA/Avon Park, FL (1956-58)
    New York City (1956, 1966)
    Chicago (1960)

    And the US has encouraged the use of such weapons, and provided the
    technology to develop such weapons in various nations abroad, including:

    Egypt
    South Africa
    Iraq

    US Political and Military Interventions since 1945
    The US has launched a series of military and political interventions since
    1945, often to install puppet regimes, or alternatively to engage in
    political actions such as smear campaigns, sponsoring or targeting
    opposition political groups (depending on how they served US interests),
    undermining political parties, sabotage and terror campaigns, and so forth.
    It has done so in nations such as

    China (1945-51)
    South Africa (1960s-1980s)

    France (1947)
    Bolivia (1964-75)

    Marshall Islands (1946-58)
    Australia (1972-75)

    Italy (1947-1975)
    Iraq (1972-75)

    Greece (1947-49)
    Portugal (1974-76)

    Philippines (1945-53)
    East Timor (1975-99)

    Korea (1945-53)
    Ecuador (1975)

    Albania (1949-53)
    Argentina (1976)

    Eastern Europe (1948-56)
    Pakistan (1977)

    Germany (1950s)
    Angola (1975-1980s)

    Iran (1953)
    Jamaica (1976)

    Guatemala (1953-1990s)
    Honduras (1980s)

    Costa Rica (mid-1950s, 1970-71)
    Nicaragua (1980s)

    Middle East (1956-58)
    Philippines (1970s-90s)

    Indonesia (1957-58)
    Seychelles (1979-81)

    Haiti (1959)
    South Yemen (1979-84)

    Western Europe (1950s-1960s)
    South Korea (1980)

    Guyana (1953-64)
    Chad (1981-82)

    Iraq (1958-63)
    Grenada (1979-83)

    Vietnam (1945-53)
    Suriname (1982-84)

    Cambodia (1955-73)
    Libya (1981-89)

    Laos (1957-73)
    Fiji (1987)

    Thailand (1965-73)
    Panama (1989)

    Ecuador (1960-63)
    Afghanistan (1979-92)

    Congo (1960-65, 1977-78)
    El Salvador (1980-92)

    Algeria (1960s)
    Haiti (1987-94)

    Brazil (1961-64)
    Bulgaria (1990-91)

    Peru (1965)
    Albania (1991-92)

    Dominican Republic (1963-65)
    Somalia (1993)

    Cuba (1959-present)
    Iraq (1990s)

    Indonesia (1965)
    Peru (1990-present)

    Ghana (1966)
    Mexico (1990-present)

    Uruguay (1969-72)
    Colombia (1990-present)

    Chile (1964-73)
    Yugoslavia (1995-99)

    Greece (1967-74)

    US Perversions of Foreign Elections
    The US has specifically intervened to rig or distort the outcome of foreign
    elections, and sometimes engineered sham “demonstration” elections to ward
    off accusations of government repression in allied nations in the US sphere
    of influence. These sham elections have often installed or maintained in
    power repressive dictators who have victimized their populations. Such
    practices have occurred in nations such as:

    Philippines (1950s)
    Italy (1948-1970s)
    Lebanon (1950s)
    Indonesia (1955)
    Vietnam (1955)
    Guyana (1953-64)
    Japan (1958-1970s)
    Nepal (1959)
    Laos (1960)
    Brazil (1962)
    Dominican Republic (1962)
    Guatemala (1963)
    Bolivia (1966)
    Chile (1964-70)
    Portugal (1974-75)
    Australia (1974-75)
    Jamaica (1976)
    El Salvador (1984)
    Panama (1984, 89)
    Nicaragua (1984, 90)
    Haiti (1987, 88)
    Bulgaria (1990-91)
    Albania (1991-92)
    Russia (1996)
    Mongolia (1996)
    Bosnia (1998)

    US Versus World at the United Nations
    The US has repeatedly acted to undermine peace and human rights initiatives
    at the United Nations, routinely voting against hundreds of UN resolutions
    and treaties. The US easily has the worst record of any nation on not
    supporting UN treaties. In almost all of its hundreds of “no” votes, the US
    was the “sole” nation to vote no (among the 100-130 nations that usually
    vote), and among only 1 or 2 other nations voting no the rest of the time.
    Here’s a representative sample of US votes from 1978-1987:

    US Is the Sole “No” Vote on Resolutions or Treaties
    For aid to underdeveloped nations
    For the promotion of developing nation exports
    For UN promotion of human rights
    For protecting developing nations in trade agreements
    For New International Economic Order for underdeveloped nations
    For development as a human right
    Versus multinational corporate operations in South Africa
    For cooperative models in developing nations
    For right of nations to economic system of their choice
    Versus chemical and biological weapons (at least 3 times)
    Versus Namibian apartheid
    For economic/standard of living rights as human rights
    Versus apartheid South African aggression vs. neighboring states (2 times)
    Versus foreign investments in apartheid South Africa
    For world charter to protect ecology
    For anti-apartheid convention
    For anti-apartheid convention in international sports
    For nuclear test ban treaty (at least 2 times)
    For prevention of arms race in outer space
    For UNESCO-sponsored new world information order (at least 2 times)
    For international law to protect economic rights
    For Transport & Communications Decade in Africa
    Versus manufacture of new types of weapons of mass destruction
    Versus naval arms race
    For Independent Commission on Disarmament & Security Issues
    For UN response mechanism for natural disasters
    For the Right to Food
    For Report of Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination
    For UN study on military development
    For Commemoration of 25th anniversary of Independence for Colonial Countries
    For Industrial Development Decade in Africa
    For interdependence of economic and political rights
    For improved UN response to human rights abuses
    For protection of rights of migrant workers
    For protection against products harmful to health and the environment
    For a Convention on the Rights of the Child
    For training journalists in the developing world
    For international cooperation on third world debt
    For a UN Conference on Trade & Development

    US Is 1 of Only 2 “No” Votes on Resolutions or Treaties
    For Palestinian living conditions/rights (at least 8 times)
    Versus foreign intervention into other nations
    For a UN Conference on Women
    Versus nuclear test explosions (at least 2 times)
    For the non-use of nuclear weapons vs. non-nuclear states
    For a Middle East nuclear free zone
    Versus Israeli nuclear weapons (at least 2 times)
    For a new world international economic order
    For a trade union conference on sanctions vs. South Africa
    For the Law of the Sea Treaty
    For economic assistance to Palestinians
    For UN measures against fascist activities and groups
    For international cooperation on money/finance/debt/trade/development
    For a Zone of Peace in the South Atlantic
    For compliance with Intl Court of Justice decision for Nicaragua vs. US.
    **For a conference and measures to prevent international terrorism
    (including its underlying causes)
    For ending the trade embargo vs. Nicaragua

    US Is 1 of Only 3 “No” Votes on Resolutions and Treaties
    Versus Israeli human rights abuses (at least 6 times)
    Versus South African apartheid (at least 4 times)
    Versus return of refugees to Israel
    For ending nuclear arms race (at least 2 times)
    For an embargo on apartheid South Africa
    For South African liberation from apartheid (at least 3 times)
    For the independence of colonial nations
    For the UN Decade for Women
    Versus harmful foreign economic practices in colonial territories
    For a Middle East Peace Conference
    For ending the embargo of Cuba (at least 10 times)

    In addition, the US has:
    Repeatedly withheld its dues from the UN
    Twice left UNESCO because of its human rights initiatives
    Twice left the International Labor Organization for its workers rights
    initiatives
    Refused to renew the Antiballistic Missile Treaty
    Refused to sign the Kyoto Treaty on global warming
    Refused to back the World Health Organization’s ban on infant formula abuses
    Refused to sign the Anti-Biological Weapons Convention
    Refused to sign the Convention against the use of land mines
    Refused to participate in the UN Conference Against Racism in Durban
    Been one of the last nations in the world to sign the UN Covenant on
    Political &
    Civil Rights (30 years after its creation)
    Refused to sign the UN Covenant on Economic & Social Rights
    Opposed the emerging new UN Covenant on the Rights to Peace, Development &
    Environmental Protection

    Sampling of Deaths >From US Military Interventions & Propping Up Corrupt
    Dictators (using the most conservative estimates)
    Nicaragua
    30,000 dead

    Brazil
    100,000 dead

    Korea
    4 million dead

    Guatemala
    200,000 dead

    Honduras
    20,000 dead

    El Salvador
    63,000 dead

    Argentina
    40,000 dead

    Bolivia
    10,000 dead

    Uruguay
    10,000 dead

    Ecuador
    10,000 dead

    Peru
    10,000 dead

    Iraq
    1.3 million dead

    Iran
    30,000 dead

    Sudan
    8-10,000 dead

    Colombia
    50,000 dead

    Panama
    5,000 dead

    Japan
    140,000 dead

    Afghanistan
    10,000 dead

    Somalia
    5000 dead

    Philippines
    150,000 dead

    Haiti
    100,000 dead

    Dominican Republic
    10,000 dead

    Libya
    500 dead

    Macedonia
    1000 dead

    South Africa
    10,000 dead

    Pakistan
    10,000 dead

    Palestine
    40,000 dead

    Indonesia
    1 million dead

    East Timor
    1/3-1/2 of total population

    Greece
    10,000 dead

    Laos
    600,000 dead

    Cambodia
    1 million dead

    Angola
    300,000 dead

    Grenada
    500 dead

    Congo
    2 million dead

    Egypt
    10,000 dead

    Vietnam
    1.5 million dead

    Chile
    50,000 dead

    Other Lethal US Interventions
    CIA Terror Training Manuals
    Development and distribution of training manuals for foreign military
    personnel or foreign nationals, including instructions on assassination,
    subversion, sabotage, population control, torture, repression,
    psychological torture, death squads, etc.

    Specific Torture Campaigns
    Creation and launching of direct US campaigns to support torture as an
    instrument of terror and social control for governments in Greece, Iran,
    Vietnam, Bolivia, Uruguay, Brazil, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Panama

    Supporting and Harboring Terrorists
    The promotion, protection, arming or equiping of terrorists such as:

    . Klaus Barbie and other German Nazis, and Italian and Japanese fascists,
    after WW II

    . Manual Noriega (Panama), Saddam Hussein (Iraq), Rafael Trujillo
    (Dominican Republic), Osama bin Laden (Afghanistan), and others whose
    terrorism has come back to haunt us

    . Running the Higher War College (Brazil) and first School of the Americas
    (Panama), which gave US training to repressors, death squad members, and
    torturers (the second School of the Americas is still running at Ft.
    Benning GA)

    . Providing asylum for Cuban, Salvadoran, Guatemalan, Haitian, Chilean,
    Argentinian, Iranian, South Vietnamese and other terrorists, dictators, and
    torturers

    Assassinating World Leaders
    Using assassination as a tool of foreign policy, wherein the CIA has
    initiated assassination attempts against at least 40 foreign heads of state
    (some several times) in the last 50 years, a number of which have been
    successful, such as: Patrice Lumumba (Congo), Rafael Trujillo (Dominican
    Republic), Ngo Dihn Diem (Vietnam) Salvador Allende (Chile)

    Arms Trade & US Military Presence
    . The US is the world’s largest seller of weapons abroad, arming
    dictators, militaries, and terrorists that repress or victimize their
    populations, and fueling scores of violent conflicts around the globe

    . The US is the world’s largest provider of live land mines which, even in
    peacetime, kill or injure at least several people around the world each day

    . The US has military bases in at least 50 nations around the world, which
    have led to frequent victimization of local populations.

    . The US military has been bombing one Middle Eastern or Muslim nation or
    another almost continuously since 1983, including Lebanon, Libya, Syria,
    Iran, the Sudan, Afghanistan, and Iraq (almost daily bombings since 1991)

    This, then, is a sampling of American foreign policies over the last 50
    years. The FBI uses the following definition for Terrorism: “The unlawful
    use of force or violence committed by a group or individual, who has some
    connection to a foreign power or whose activities transcend national
    boundaries, against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a
    government, the civilian population or any segment thereof, in furtherance
    of political or social objectives.” This sounds like the terrorism we just
    experienced. It also sounds a lot like the US policies and actions since
    1945 that I’ve just described.

    YOU NEED TO STOP YOUR ELITE GONE MAD !

  2. Just remember boys and girls and sheeple: this was done by a president that was a REPUBLICAN, but I am under the impression that DINO’s are bad and RINO’s are good. Then again we have the WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION.

  3. George W Obama | June 18, 2017 at 7:22 am | Reply

    Kermit Roosevelt worked out of the US embassy to overthrow Mossadeq. All because Mossadeq insisted the British pay for the oil they were taking from Iran.

    The bankers will not tolerate socialism or capitalism, it has to be crony capitalism.

  4. One of the most interesting, but totally neglected, aspects of CIA Iran coup of August 1953 is its timing. The CIA coup would hardly have been staged while Stalin, the leader of Iran’s powerful northern neighbor, the Soviet Union, was still alive – Stalin died on March 5th 1953. Even after Stalin’s death, America wouldn’t have dared to stage a coup in Iran if it weren’t for the chaos in leadership succession, which followed Stalin’s death. Under any other circumstances the Soviet Union would have not allowed an American takeover of Iran in 1953; and the US administration and the CIA would not have planned anything as daring as the 1953 coup against Prime Minister Mosadegh’s government.

  5. “Mass propaganda means (press, etc.): CIA controls a network with numerous press, political, and clerical contacts which has proven itself capable of disseminating large-scale anti-Tudeh propaganda.”

    And on and on it goes…

  6. Let us not forget that “Stormin Norman” Schwarzkofps father was involved as well. All it takes to affect massive change is a few highly motivated people in the right area @ the right time?

    It works for positive change as well as those with more nefarious intentions.

  7. All you can do is shake your head and wonder just which people should hate which people. The US directly interfered in the political regime of a sovereign nation and had its democratically elected leader assassinated and the rest of its government overthrown. It then installed a tyrant who was hated by the Iranian people for decades. Now the US hates Iran! Do you think America has a guilty conscience and is intent on destroying the nation that it had earlier made into a despotic tyranny, as a way of removing any remants of its despicable intervention?

  8. The world is a chess game, according to zbig.
    All deceit all the time.
    End the Fed and all zentral banks.
    Sacrifice the old goat(s).
    Silver stakes required.

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