“...Mossadegh has, in effect, cut off his nose to spite his face.”
The Amsterdam Evening Recorder and Daily Democrat in New York opines on the Anglo-Iranian oil standoff—Monday, November 12, 1951.
STALEMATE ON IRAN
Despite weeks of discussion, the Iranian oil negotiations seem to be going around in circles. Premier Mossadegh, who is still in Washington, apparently is reluctant to return home empty-handed, while the British are determined to have it no other way. Oddly enough, now that the British are out of Iran, they seem to be in no hurry to return.
Oil experts, meanwhile, assure us that the industry has already made up the loss of supply from Iran. Under the circumstances, Mossadegh’s case is weakened by each additional day of delay. Time was when he could have dashed home with any one of several favorable technical solutions offered by Britain or suggested by the United States, but he chose to hold out for more. The way things are now shaping up, Mossadegh may face a fight for his political life upon his return to Iran.
The interest of Britain in the controversy is its vast investment in the Iranian oil industry. The prime concern of Washington, on the other hand, is the preservation of peace, and the defeat of Communist forces in Iran.
From the beginning, the American position in the dispute has been weak. We cannot insist on either side giving in to the other. All we can do is offer advice, which thus far has been rejected. Meanwhile, all the evidence supports the fact that in holding out for more than he had any reason to hope might be forthcoming, Mossadegh has, in effect, cut off his nose to spite his face.