‘No Support’ If Britain Invaded Iran

Barrister John Parris, Labor Candidate (Oct. 1951)

Arash Norouzi

The Mossadegh Project | May 4, 2022                     

Barrister John Parris John Parris was an English barrister who was disbarred under dubious circumstances and became an outspoken critic of the British legal system. He went on to write numerous books about the law and arbitration, including his 1961 memoir Under My Wig.

In 1951 he ran for local office, during which he commented on the danger of a potential invasion of Iran, which was being hotly debated at the time. The British-owned Anglo-Iranian Oil Company was nationalized in March, followed by the ejection of British personnel by Oct. 4th, leading to open talk of a military response.

British Foreign Office documents on Iran

John Parris, Labour Candidate (North Bradford)

The Bradford Conservative and National-Liberal Association

October 8, 1951

“If we invaded Persia for the sake of the oil wells we should be going contrary to our undertakings given to the United Nations.

We should not only not have the support of the United States and much of the British Commonwealth and the Dominions, but we should put ourselves in the same position as North Korea did when it invaded South Korea.

I believe the only way to peace is the way we have pursued so far.”

• Source: The Yorkshire Observer (Bradford, England), Oct. 9, 1951

Richard Stokes’ Second Thoughts on Iranian Oil (1951 Letter)
Richard Stokes' Letter to Clement Attlee, Aga Khan Concurs (1951)

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Related links:

Winston Churchill | Campaign Speech on Iran Oil Crisis (1951)

UK v. Iran Judgment: ICJ Lacks Jurisdiction on AIOC Case | July 22, 1952

British Premier Clement Attlee | Labour Party Manifesto Speech (Oct. 1, 1951)

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

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