Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Britain pressed US to join Iran coup against Mosaddegh

The British government in 1952 repeatedly asked the US to join in a coup aimed at toppling Mohammad Mosaddegh, Iran’s prime minister, according to newly declassified State Department documents.

The files offer “the first officially-released confirmation of Britain’s expressed aim in late 1952 to persuade Washington to help oust Mosaddegh,” according to two scholars affiliated with the National Security Archive, the private non-partisan research organisation that obtained the documents. 

The “Top Secret” State Department memoranda — including one entitled “British proposal to organise a coup d’état in Iran” — also offer fresh insights into London’s assessment of Iranian politics and the threat to British interests that eventually led to the August 1953 coup. 

That anti-government uprising, backed by Britain and the US, toppled Mosaddegh, ushered in more than two decades of authoritarian rule by Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and embittered relations between Tehran and the west.

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