Sen. Jay Rockefeller on the Mossadegh Effect
Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV)
Senator John D. Rockefeller IV (aka Jay Rockefeller), Democrat from West Virginia, brought up Mossadegh in a February 2005 interview on CNN [see bottom]. The following year, his keynote address before The Asia Society [50th Anniversary Gala Dinner on February 23, 2006] again referenced Mossadegh and the 1953 coup before an audience that included Henry Kissinger and Kofi Annan:
It was 53 years ago that the United States and the United Kingdom worked their way to overthrow the Prime Minister of Iran, Mossadegh. When you bring that up in a conversation these days, people say, "Who?" But that was 53 years ago. To understand Iran, you must understand that for Iranians, this event happened last night. It is of the moment. It defines us even for what we did so many years ago.
Shortly afterward, the speech got the following write up in The New York Daily News' "Lowdown" gossip column written by Lloyd Grove:
Talk about being between a Rockefeller and a hard place! At last week's Asia Society gala, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) warned that Iranians are still angry at the United States for engineering the 1953 overthrow of their democratically elected prime minister, Mohammed Mossadegh, in favor of the autocratic Shah. But Jay's 90-year-old uncle, David, insisted: "The Shah of Iran was a wonderful friend and a wonderful man." Yeah, sure — as long as his secret police weren't pulling off your fingernails.
The above quote attributed to David Rockefeller was actually part of his keynote address at The Asia Society dinner, in which he thanked "..my old friend Hushang Ansary who I knew and worked with closely during the sad and difficult days when the Shah of Iran was having very sad and difficult problems. He’s a wonderful friend and a wonderful man."
The NY Daily News passage takes the liberty of editing together two phrases as a single quote, while changing the word is to was. The resulting quote has a completely different meaning, since David Rockefeller was actually referring to Hushang Ansary [Former Ambassador, Iranian expatriate and millionaire GOP supporter] as "a wonderful friend and a wonderful man", not the deceased Shah.
From Jay Rockefeller's appearance on CNN in February 2005:
CNN LATE EDITION WITH WOLF BLITZER
Aired February 13, 2005-
JAY ROCKEFELLER: I think another area where Pat [Senator Pat Roberts, Kansas Republican] and I strongly agree is that, you know, Iran, like North Korea, is very, very dangerous. It's very focused against Israel. It's very focused against us. It has not forgiven us for overthrowing Prime Minister Mossadegh back in '53, you know, the shah, all of it. They really dislike us.
They are a dangerous country, and they're much more sophisticated than Iraq.