Dem. Candidate Tom Steyer on Iran
Overthrowing Mossadegh A “Dramatic Mistake”

Arash Norouzi
The Mossadegh Project | January 17, 2020                    

2020 Democratic Presidential Candidate Tom Steyer on Iran, Donald Trump

2020 Democratic Presidential Candidate Tom Steyer, a successful investor, philanthropist, activist and self-made billionaire, has outlined a clear set of priorities as an American leader.

Addressing the climate crisis is number one, followed by such issues as getting corporate money out of politics, reducing income inequality, and vanquishing the now impeached Donald Trump, whom he has called “a fraud and a failure”, a “conman, crook, and criminal”, and “the most corrupt President in American history”.

Steyer has long questioned the U.S. strategy in countering Iran. With the U.S.-Iran standoff heating up rapidly, especially after the controversial U.S. drone assassination of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Steyer’s statements in recent months have proved rather prophetic. Given the reckless course of the Trump regime, of course, this crisis in the making was also predictable.

In a recent CNN interview, Jake Tapper asked Steyer to opine on the fate of Iranian leader Mohammad Mossadegh, who became the victim of an Anglo-American backed coup in 1953. Steyer’s smooth reply imparted his familiarity with the topic, and hopefully added a little context for Americans who are usually offered a much shorter U.S.-Iran timeline beginning in 1979.

CNN Interview (Go to 5:40 for Steyer’s Iran comments)

CNN: State of the Union with Jake Tapper
January 12, 2020


TAPPER: So, you’ll be on the debate stage Tuesday with the former Vice President of the United States, with three senators with decades of combined experience, an Afghan war veteran... What experience do you have that makes you qualify to be Commander in Chief and trusted to send American service members into harm’s way?

STEYER: Well, Jake, I did business for over 30 years working and traveling around the world, meeting with governments, talking to the heads of huge corporations and understanding actually what drives America’s business around the world and our relationships with other countries and what makes that trade and relationship succeed.

So when I think about our experience over the last 20 years, the person who I actually think did the best job in figuring out American foreign policy and military policy was a state senator from Illinois with absolutely no military or international experience named Barack Obama, who said against the advice of everybody who was an insider in Washington, D.C., that the Iraq war was a mistake.

So when you say, actually what we need to do is to have more D.C. conventional wisdom in our foreign policy and our military policy, I would say actually, when I am look at the last 20 years, you don’t actually inspire me so much, and listening to the earlier part of the show where in fact that very same conventional D.C. wisdom led to misinformation about why we got into Iraq, led to decades of misinformation about what we were doing in Afghanistan. When you tell me that what we need is more conventional D.C. thinking about our international policy, our foreign policy and our military policy, I would actually suggest to you that maybe this is more about judgment than experience.

TAPPER: Let me ask you, when you are look at the current conflict with Iran, how much of it do you trace back to what happened to Prime Minister Mossadegh?

STEYER: You know, it — there’s no way to get away from the idea that when the United States does something like depose Prime Minister Mossadegh which — you know, that’s how the Shah came into power, we basically put him into power, that what that does is it changes people’s opinion about the United States and what we stand for. Whether we’re the guys — the good guys, the people who stand up for democracy and people’s rights and freedom and equality.

And that’s one of the big problems that I have right now with the execution of General Soleimani which is America’s brand in the world is the most important protection we have. That even when we’re not getting along with an Iranian regime, or we’re not getting along with Vladimir Putin, the point is the people around the world know we stand for what’s right. And that was true when President Obama was the President, is that around the world it didn’t matter if we were disagreeing with the Iranian regime, everybody in the world knew we stood for what’s right.

And when we do something like depose Mossadegh, or we execute General Soleimani, the question we all should ask ourselves is not just the short term question, but long-term, does it make us less safe? Does it change everyone's opinion in the Middle East about what the United States really cares about and who we really are? So, yes, I think that was a dramatic mistake that has reverberated throughout the region for obviously multiple, multiple decades.

TAPPER: It’s something that the Iranians still talk about on the street today. Thank you so much, Tom Steyer. Appreciate your time.

STEYER: Of course they do! Thank you, Jake.

Tom Steyer on Iran: Fox News @ Night, Jan. 11, 2020 with Shannon Bream


Related links:

Unnecessary Roughness: U.S. Foreign Policy, the Conrad Dobler Way

New Zealand MP Russel Norman: Stay Out of the Middle East!

Martin O’Malley: Imagine If Iran Had Continued On A Democratic Path

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

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