Crops ‘N Robbers
August 20, 1952 — The Knickerbocker News
A blunt editorial in The Knickerbocker News newspaper of Albany, New York.
Acting the Dictator
Premier Mossadegh realizes the six months’ time which Parliament gave him for carrying out some drastic proposals will not be long in passing. So he has proceeded to put his agrarian reform into operation at once.
This proposal calls for distributing the land owned by a small group of rich owners to the peasants. It is a plan which apparently the Shah had recommended for several years but for which he could get no support in Parliament. [Majles]
An accompanying decree ordered that 20 per cent of the crop be distributed among the peasants at once.
It is realized that the feudal estates have no justification. It remains to be seen whether the new dictator can get these decrees carried out before the end of the six months.
It is freely anticipated that the landlord group, which has been very powerful in Iranian politics in the past, will seek to obstruct the proposal when Parliament reconvenes early next year.
The situation in Iran remains highly explosive. Agrarian reforms of the drastic type now out into operation by Mossadegh are not easily completed within a few weeks or a few months. It remains, therefore, a highly dangerous situation.
It should be remembered that Mossadegh, when he asked for dictatorial powers for six months, agreed that Parliament should, at the close of that period, take notice of what he had done. In other words, it is possible that Parliament may reverse his drastic plans for land reform. Then the situation will be worse than it was before he became dictator. The peasants will have been given false hopes and the Communist threat to move in will have been aggravated.
Power-Hungry Mossadegh — The Morning Herald, August 19, 1952
Saving Iran — The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, August 21, 1952
Rule By Riot — The Knickerbocker News, March 2, 1953
MOSSADEGH t-shirts — “If I sit silently, I have sinned”