1953: U.S. overthrows Prime Minister Mossadeq of Iran.
U.S. installs Shah as dictator.
On June 1st, 1953, the CIA and the British SIS submitted their initial
plans for the overthrow of Mossadeq, and the installation of the Shah
as dictator and General Zahedi as Prime Minister. Both the CIA and the
SIS pledged military and logistical aid, and worked through the British
ambassador in Tehran to convince the Shah to assume the dictatorship.
In presenting this
plan to the Shah, the US and the Brits wanted to stress that the
primary objective of the coup was "to maintain independence Iran
[sic] and keep from Soviet orbit. To do this Mossadeq must be removed."
The secondary objective (which they list first) 'as pitched to the Shah"
On August 19th, 1953, democratically elected Mossadeq was overthrown,
and the Shah took control. Read
this Memorandum for the President from August 1953, classified
as Top Secret. In particular: "The Shah is a new man. For the
first time he believes in himself because he feels that he is King
by his people's choice. He recognizes now his debt to us and hopes,
as he puts it, that we have a realistic understanding of the importance
of Iran to us."
The New York Times has an excellent collection of original
documents (you need Adobe
photographs, and an archive of original
Times' coverage of the coup. There‚s also a timeline of US-Iran
relations, as well as a timeline of the coup
itself. More declassified documents on Iran can be found
here from the National Security Archive. Many of the original documents,
What if the US and the UK had stayed
out of Iran?
In 1954, Iran happily announced
an oil deal with British, French and American oil companies.
You can read original CIA documents here.
Search: Iran AND 1953 AND Shah.