The Young Turks on the CIA Backed 1953 Iran Coup

This video comes from 2013. It’s a report by The Young Turks on the release of declassified papers, revealing that the CIA was responsible for the coup, which overthrew the democratically elected prime minister, Mossadeq, and placed the Shah in absolute control of the country. The video discusses the way the CIA orchestrated the coup through bribes to elected members of the Iranian parliament, and staged mass demonstrations against Moddadeq and his National Front. The ostensible purpose of the coup was to prevent Iran becoming vulnerable to Soviet aggression. The reality was that the CIA acted to take over the Iranian oil industry and give it to American companies. It was given away very cheaply by the Shah, who was grateful for them assisting him into power.

Here’s the video:

This another video I’m posting because it is also relevant to Britain. Mossadeq was overthrown because his government nationalised the Iranian oil industry. One of the companies affected was Anglo-Persian Oil, which in the aftermath of the coup was renamed British Petroleum. As well as American secret service personnel like Stormin’ Norman Schwarzkopf’s father, the British government was also involved. The British Prime Minister at the time was Winston Churchill, who described it as ‘a great venture’. For further information on British involvement, see Mark Curtis’ article ‘A ‘Great Venture’: Overthrowing the Government of Iran’ in Lobster 30, pp. 1-5. The article is an abridged version of chapter 4 of Curtis’ book The Ambiguities of Power: British Foreign Policy Since 1945 (Zed Press 1995).

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