He Won’t Be Pleased
April 26, 1954 — The Morning Herald
The bias is strong in this lead editorial from The Morning Herald of Gloversville, New York, published roughly one year after the overthrow of Mossadegh.
NEW CHANCE FOR IRAN
THERE appears to be a good chance that the new government of Iran will accept help in restoring the country to economic solvency. With ex-premier Mohammed Mossadegh in jail, absolute bankruptcy and national ruin can be averted even at this late date if Premier Fazollah Zahedi [sic—Fazlollah Zahedi] concludes a deal with eight foreign oil companies, five of them American, to produce and market Iranian oil. The negotiations are about to get under way.
The new oil combine is dominated by the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company of Britain, the firm which operated Iran’s oil industry under treaty concession for many years and was driven from the country by Mossadegh. Since that happened three years ago Iran’s single great natural resource hasn’t brought a cent into the treasury, and in what manner national bankruptcy has been avoided in the interval is a mystery.
The international character of the co-operative enterprise—British, American, French and Dutch—should effectively silence those Iranians who supported Mossadegh [sic—Mossadegh’s] nationalistic policy which culminated in the ouster of Anglo-Iranian when it was the sole concessionaire. It guarantees that there will be no renewal of one-nation monopoly in the Iranian oil fields.
There will be some thorny problems to be solved by negotiation, notably the British firm’s claim for losses suffered when it properties were nationalized by the Mossadegh government and compensation for subsequent losses of revenue. The British have offered substantial concessions in sporadic negotiations since 1951 and are willing to make others in the interest of the new proposal for international combined operation of the industry.
Premier Zahedi extended what is described as “a cordial invitation” to the oil companies to make their joint proposal, and they are not only willing, but anxious, to establish Iran’s oil industry as a going concern once more to the advantage of everybody concerned.
The atmosphere seems conducive to understanding and co-operation. In his prison cell Mossadegh may one day soon get the news that the near ruin he visited upon his country is being repaired. Half power-mad demagogue, half buffoon that he is, he won’t be pleased.
Readers Debate Ethics of Oil Nationalization in The Buffalo Courier-Express (1954)
Costly Stubbornness — The Morning Herald, September 12, 1954
A Step Ahead in Iran — The Milwaukee Journal, August 9, 1954
MOSSADEGH t-shirts — “If I sit silently, I have sinned”