No Visible Policy

June 4, 1951 — The Muncie Star

The Mossadegh Project | June 12, 2023                      

An editorial on Iran in The Muncie Star newspaper of Muncie, Indiana.

The Muncie Star (Muncie, Indiana)

‘Personal Diplomacy’ Again

The American State Department has had no visible policy in explosive Iran except to string along with the British or to “wait and see.”

Meanwhile, the State Department has taken positions elsewhere in the Middle East that have angered the Moslem and Arab world. As a result there is little hope for the success of “personal diplomacy” on the part of President Truman in the Iranian oil crisis.

After watching the United States back up the British at virtually every turn leading to the present situation in Iran, the extreme nationalists now in charge of that country can hardly be expected to “roll over and play dead” on receipt of a somewhat patronizing letter from Mr. Truman urging moderation.

Both the British and the Iranians have been showing a willingness to toss lighted matches at an extremely sensitive powderkeg in their quarrel over nationalization of Iran’s oil. A mediator is sorely needed who recognizes Iran’s basic right to nationalize her resources and the need to keep these resources from the Kremlin’s grasp. But the Truman administration is in no position to assume that role through resort to “personal diplomacy.”

Why is it anyhow that both the Roosevelt and Truman administrations have consistently let world situations deteriorate and then staged flamboyant last-minute shows of “personal diplomacy?” [FDR and Harry Truman] Representative Charles B. Brownson of Indianapolis was right in his sharp criticism of that process Friday night. In nearly, all instances it has worked against the self-interest of the United States and has helped to bring “not peace but a sword” to a bleeding world.

The present crisis in Iran has been foreseen ever since the end of World War II. The United States government has done little to prepare for it but has let itself be tagged “pro-British” in Iran and has infuriated Moslems in Iran and throughout the Middle East. Therefore it seems the best thing our government can do at this late date is to maintain a hands-off position, at the same time making clear to Russia that she had better do the same.

70th Anniversary of TIME’s 1951 Man of the Year
Challenge of the East: TIME's 1951 Man of the Year Mohammad Mossadegh


Related links:

Iran to the Communists? | The Muncie Star, Sept. 21, 1951

The Boys From Denver Take Over | Calgary Herald, Sept. 11, 1952

Last Gasp of British Arrogance? | Salt Lake Telegram, June 13, 1951

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

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