Bowing To the King

August 18, 1953 — The Times Record

The Mossadegh Project | September 1, 2014                  

The Times Record newspaper of Troy, New York puts in a good word for the fading institution of monarchies in this Tuesday evening editorial published one day before the return of the Shah from Rome.


The Shah of Persia has run away. Probably, in view of Mossadegh’s coup, that was his only road to safety. Thus one more monarchy falls. There are not many of them left.

But is that phrase accurate? What is a monarchy? Theoretically in Britain the Parliament elects its ruler and it may, if it wishes, ignore the rules of royal descent. Strictly speaking, nations elect their kings. Belgium made a change in the regular line of precedence recently. Other nations have done it often. In reality monarchy is a name. The people pick their rulers. With the exception, of course, of those monarchies which rest upon force. Sometimes a ruler seizes the crown and prevents, through his army, any change in the title.

How does monarchy, then, differ from absolutism except in name? Is the Russian leadership any less of an absolute monarchy, ruled by fear and force, than the monarchy of Cambyses or of Cyrus? It is not. Is not Mossadegh now the Shah of Persia in everything but the name? The fact is that the world has drifted strongly toward absolute monarchy during the last twenty years, not away from it. All we have lost is the type of regal government which Britain and the Scandinavian countries have. And, in reality, there were never many monarchies in the world which were honestly constitutional.


Related links:

Dictatorship Replaces Monarchy in Little Iran | August 18, 1953 editorial

The Reluctant Dragon | U.S. Editorial, August 20, 1953

Persia’s Master | The Courier-Mail (Brisbane), August 18, 1953

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

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