Dim Outlook

October 1, 1951 — The Baltimore Sun

The Mossadegh Project | June 16, 2023                   

An editorial on Iran in The Baltimore Sun newspaper (Baltimore, Maryland).

Handing It Over To The U.N.

Britain’s decision to carry the serious problem of its disagreement with Iran before the United Nations Security Council indicates that Mr. Attlee’s Government has given up all hope of negotiating a settlement with Tehran. [Clement Attlee] London is placing its case in the hands of the international organization on the grounds that the existing situation imperils the world’s peace.

For a variety of reasons it is apparent that this week promises to be a critical, perhaps, a decisive, one in the long-festering quarrel over Iranian nationalization of the oil resources developed by a British controlled company. For one thing by turning to the Security Council, Britain brings Russia directly into the controversy. The Soviet has a place as a permanent member of the Council, its delegate exercises as everyone well knows — a veto power that could cancel out any finding or recommendation agreed on by all other members, and it can be token as certain that Russia will make a grandstand play for Iranian friendship and British confusion.

Russia’s interests in Iran are large and selfish. At the same time in Tehran there are ominous statements that Iran does not consider the Council “competent” to deal with an “internal” matter, although Premier Mossadegh may lead a Persian delegation to New York to debate the question. Even more disturbing is the assertion that there will be no delaying of the order to British technicians to quit Abadan by Thursday. Since it is this order which is the most immediately dangerous aspect of the whole crisis the Council must move rapidly if it is to reduce the risks inherent in any effort by Iran to enforce the instructions. And moving expeditiously with Russia sitting in — or on the consultations will be extremely difficult.

It will be the second time, of course, that a sharp Iranian issue has come before the Council. In 1946 it was Iran itself that complained of the continued presence of Russian troops on Iranian territory. Trouble was averted when Moscow and Tehran reached an agreement before the Council was forced to act on the issue. The best that can be hoped in the present emergency is that some similar accommodation will be reached between England and Iran while their disagreement lies before the United Nations. But the outlook for any such speedy settlement is very dim.

What Went Wrong in Iran? | Amb. Henry Grady Tells All (1952)
What Went Wrong in Iran? | Saturday Evening Post, Jan. 5, 1952

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Related links:

Britain Requests UNSC Hear Iran Oil Dispute | Sept. 28, 1951

Iran States Its Case | Oct. 17, 1951 editorial (Amsterdam, NY)

Dangerous Oil | The Daily Mercury (Queensland), Oct. 2, 1951

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

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