Martin O'Malley on US-Iran History
Cold War Mentality Driving Unproductive Foreign Policy

Arash Norouzi
The Mossadegh Project
| January 18, 2016                                                         

2016 Democratic Presidential candidate & former Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley on Iran, U.S. Foreign Policy

“Imagine … how different this world would be if Iran had continued on a democratic path, but instead we joined forces with British intelligence and helped join in the toppling of a democratically-elected leader in Iran...” — Martin O’Malley (Dec. 2015)
Former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, a 2016 candidate for President, views the Iranian nuclear program as one of the chief threats to the United States. And he recognizes the emergence of this threat as a consequence of misguided policies dating back to the Cold War.

The lessons of the U.S.-supported 1953 coup, which slashed and burned the last vestige of Iran’s democratic institutions, have apparently been on the mind of O’Malley, former Mayor of Baltimore and committed Democrat. During a recent televised Presidential debate, he mentioned the fate of democratically elected Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh, ousted in a CIA coup, as a historic miscalculation, and has elaborated further in a subsequent interview.

And so the seismic 1953 coup in Iran, a consequential factor in our current geopolitical landscape, continues to make its presence felt well into the 21st century.

3rd Democratic Presidential Debate
St. Anselm College, New Hampshire — December 19, 2015

During the Cold War . . . we got into a bad habit of always looking to see who was wearing the jersey of the Communists, and who was wearing the U.S. jersey. We got into a bad habit of creating big bureaucracies, old methodologies, to undermine regimes that were not friendly to the United States.

Look what we did in Iran with Mossadegh. And look at the results that we’re still dealing with because of that. I would suggest to you that we need to leave the Cold War behind us, and we need to put together new alliances and new approaches to dealing with this, and we need to restrain ourselves.

I mean, I know Secretary Clinton was gleeful when Gaddafi was torn apart. [Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi] And the world, no doubt is a better place without him. But look, we didn’t know what was happening next. And we fell into the same trap with Assad, saying — as if it’s our job to say, ‘Assad must go’. [Syrian President Bashar al-Assad]

We have a role to play in this world. But we need to leave the Cold War and that sort of antiquated thinking behind us.

Interview in The Portsmouth Herald
Portsmouth, New Hampshire — December 20, 2015

Martin O’Malley elaborated on his foreign policy vision in a post-debate interview by Eric Hawkins, which was published Dec. 29th in the Portsmouth Herald and the Exeter News-Letter. From the article:

Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh (1882-1967) “O’Malley said that “Cold War-era thinking” has led the U.S. government to a place where “(we think) we’re somehow doing the cause of democracy in the world a favor by toppling a regime.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

“Look at Iran. Imagine … how different this world would be if Iran had continued on a democratic path (in 1953, under Prime Minister Mossadeq), but instead we joined forces with British intelligence and helped join in the toppling of a democratically-elected leader in Iran because we believed he might be more disposed to the Russians,” he said. [A false belief, and there was much more to it than that]

O’Malley went on to criticize the belief that Bashir al-Assad “must go” in Syria, [sic—Bashar al-Assad] saying that he is “not sure what looking glass we fell into that made us the arbiters of of where and when brutal dictators have to go.”

“We have an obligation to speak out against human rights abuses, to lead other nations to combat the use of chemical weapons and the atrocities Assad was committing, but we have a lust, a lust that seems in our more recent foreign policy past, without appreciating that it can lead to even greater brutality than the regime we were toppling,” he said.

“Too often we take actions that are inconsistent with our values,” O’Malley added.

The Truth Behind Those "Unseen" Iran Photos in The Guardian
The Truth Behind Those "Unseen" Iran 1953 Coup Photos


Related links:

Secretary of State John Kerry’s Historic Iran Deal: Smart Diplomacy of Appeasement?

Republican Ad Tycoon Bruce Barton Preaches Non-intervention (June 1951)

President Barack Obama on Iran, Mossadegh and the 1953 Coup

MOSSADEGH t-shirts — “If I sit silently, I have sinned”

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