Feeling Jittery

May 23, 1951 — Daily News (Perth)

The Mossadegh Project | March 16, 2023                    

Lead editorial on Iran in The Daily News newspaper (Perth, Western Australia), founded in 1882.

Australian media archive


IT IS so much rot for the Persian Government to say the activities of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company “have raised the anger of the Persian people.” The “activities” have been going on since 1909, and the “anger,” newly found, is being stirred from within.

Not so much rot is the same Government’s confession that a certain “nervousness” is behind the nationalisation. But this nervousness is not entirely among the people; it’s among the Majlis (Parliament) itself.

When its 106 deputies got to their feet back in March to vote for nationalisation, the only dissent came from a spectator in the gallery who cried: “Eight grams of gunpowder did this.”

He meant that the Majlis was intimidated by the assassination of anti-nationalisationist [sic] Premier Ali Razmara. This and other acts of terrorism by Mohammedan fanatics of the National Front, cleverly goaded by the officially outlawed but active Tudeh Party (communist) have done as much as anything to produce present Premier Mossadeq’s faintings and hidings, his henchmen’s panicky “patriotism” and the oil grab itself.

Even the Shah, whose longstanding opposition to nationalisation now goes unvoiced, has ceremoniously begun distribution on easy instalment terms of his vast land holdings, on which 500,000 of his peasants live.

While Britain and the U.S. have fiddled about, smouldering Persian “anti-foreign” feeling has been deliberately fanned by internal intriguers. Let the flames break out and they will spread far beyond the oil wells and the cowering Majlis.

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Related links:

Britain Must Protect Her Rights In Persia | Sydney Morning Herald, May 28, 1951

Persian Oil | The Lachlander (New South Wales), May 16, 1952

Bleak Outlook In Persia | Newcastle Morning Herald, May 5, 1951

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

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