The King, Premier and the Mullahs

March 3, 1953 — The Indian Express

The Mossadegh Project | June 21, 2013                    

This commentary on the No’he Esfand drama in Tehran — the third of three editorials in The Indian Express that day — was the only one not pertaining to Indian matters.

Tension in Teheran

THE Shah’s dramatic re-entry into Iran’s politics has many intriguing features. He has been hitherto playing the role of the constitutional monarch well, but when on a popular demonstration he suddenly cancelled his projected sojourn abroad and chose to stay put at Teheran, he lent colour to the suspicion that it was all planned in advance. And Mullah Kashani’s active role in the reassertion of the Shah’s authority may have dubious implications. [Ayatollah Kashani] Kashani succeeded in reasserting his authority over the Majlis by his support of Prime Minister Mossadeq while he was riding the crest of popularity after the nationalisation of Iran’s oil. The Government’s agricultural reforms had a similar effect but both created a number of enemies for the Mossadeq Ministry. The fact that Dr. Mossadeq was given the extraordinary powers by Iran’s Parliament virtually without demur in the beginning but that a subsequent extension was opposed by some Deputies was but a pointer, but as the Premier threatens a referendum on both issues his conscience and his tactics seem above board. If he has behaved in a dictatorial manner by dismissing the army and police chiefs, the Foreign Minister has given the reasons for it. Dr. Mossadeq’s future is his personal concern, but the intrusion of Iran’s industrialists (they and some Muslim leaders prevailed on the Shah not to leave the country) into Iran’s politics under Kashani’s influence is a portent. It is not clear on what issue the Shah differed from his Prime Minister. But the demonstrations and counter-demonstrations that are being staged in Teheran might spread to the outlying areas and split the country in two. Such an eventuality will not benefit the people of Iran who have been putting up with various privations out of patriotic zeal. Considering it’s international repercussions this development in Mossadeq’s Iran will be certainly watched with interest if also with some concern.

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Related links:

Shah’s Supporters Clash With Mossadegh GroupUPI, April 10, 1953

Mossadeq Wants Monarchy To StayThe Indian Express, April 7, 1953

Breakdown of Iran Oil Talks Stirred Riots Against MossyAP, March 3, 1953

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

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