The Integrity of Frank Gannett
July 24, 1952 — U.S. Editorial

Arash Norouzi
The Mossadegh Project | January 11, 2014                     

This editorial on the return to power of Premier Mossadegh ran in The Saratogian newspaper of Saratoga Springs, New York on Monday, July 28, 1952, in a section headed “As We See it – What’s Your Reaction?”.

The same exact piece had previously been published in The Ogdensburg Journal (Ogdensburg, NY) editorial page on Friday, July 25, 1952. And in The Ithaca Journal (Ithaca, New York) the day before that, titled “Iran On Skids”.

Frank E. Gannett, photographed by Yousuf Karsh in 1953 There was a connection. The Saratogian was owned by the Northern New York Publishing Co, Inc., which had several other regional papers in its portfolio. Its President was Frank Gannett (1876-1957), the famed media mogul and rival of William Randolph Hearst. Same for The Ithaca Journal.

The Ogdensburg Journal was not identified with this conglomerate, but was, in fact, a Gannett property. Frank Gannett is identified as “President and Publisher”, and his ironic dictum, featured underneath the masthead, reads, “The absolute independence and integrity of a Gannett newspaper must never be in doubt”.

Iran Stays On Skids

Government by mob has succeeded government by parliament in Iran. Prime Minister Mossadegh, who seized the British oil companies last year, fell when the Shah was reluctant to give him a military dictatorship as well an economic dictatorship.

For a fleeting moment there was hope that with a new prime minister, Mr. Qavam [Ahmad Ghavam], Iran’s headlong slide toward complete economic disintegration could be arrested. He was heralded as among the wiliest of politicians in a land of wily politicians.

But the flimsiness of the hope of better days was shown immediately when mobs ran riot all over the country. And Qavam showed just how wily he is by resigning. He recognized that Mossadegh’s backing came neither from Communist sympathizers nor those with Western orientation but from religio-nationalist fanatics whose ancient tool is government by clamor.

The situation now is that the benefits to be derived from settling the oil controversy can only follow a rapprochement with Britain. But after more than a year of agitation this can be reached only by betraying what has now come to be regarded by the mob as Iranian national interests.

In this situation Qavam was powerless. Hope for fresh negotiations died in the rioting in Tehran and other Iranian cities. And Iran is reduced to working out its own salvation with no individual or party possessing effective power to pacify the nation and reach a settlement.

The only Iranians who have a truce with fate are the 70,000 former employees of the Abadan refinery who have been paid for a year to do nothing. For the rest, there is only chaos.

Divvying Up the Loot: The Iran Oil Consortium Agreement of 1954
Divvying Up the Loot: The Iran Oil Consortium Agreement of 1954


Related links:

Neglected Treasure | U.S. Editorial, August 25, 1953

A Note on Point IV | The New York Post, August 15, 1952

The Reluctant Dragon | U.S. Editorial, August 20, 1953

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

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