Why hasn’t Iran emerged as a democracy?

February 17, 2008 | By | 2 Replies More

According to this video by JustforeignPolicy.org, Iran once was a democracy. Until a foreign power crushed that democracy in 1953.

The take-away message from this video: it doesn’t have to be the way it is currently portrayed to be between Iran and the U.S.

The history of relations between the United States and Iran has been marked by misunderstanding and mistrust shaped by the unjust use of violence and threats of violence. Violent conflict has not served the interests of either country. Military threats have only deepened the hostilities and resentment and this makes future conflict more likely. Serious diplomacy between our two countries is urgently needed.


Category: Politics, The Middle East, War

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (2)

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  1. Erich Vieth says:

    If you can bear to review all of the covert regime changes the U.S. has forced, check out this Wikipedia article:

  2. Erich Vieth says:

    Stephen Kinzer, being interviewed by Amy Goodman regard the U.S. interference in Iran in 1953:

    We had the election of 1952. Dwight Eisenhower took office. John Foster Dulles became his secretary of state. And Dulles had spent his whole adult life working as a lawyer for giant international corporations. And the idea that a country should be able to get away with nationalizing such a big company, such a big corporate resource, was, as Dulles very well understood, a great threat to the system that he had been representing all his life, the system of multinational enterprise. And he realized that it was in the interest of the United States, as he saw them, to make sure that no such example could be set. So the new administration, the Eisenhower administration, reversed the policy of the Truman administration. They agreed to send a CIA agent, Kermit Roosevelt, to Iran in the summer of 1953. And that’s the story that I tell in my book.

    It just took Kermit Roosevelt three weeks in August of 1953—

    AMY GOODMAN: With a bag of money.

    STEPHEN KINZER: Bag of money and a few other very interesting resources. He was a real-life James Bond. This guy was a real intrepid secret agent, and the story is just amazing how he did this. But it’s really an object lesson in how easy it is for a rich and powerful country to throw a poor and weak country into chaos. So at the end of August 1953, Mosaddeq was overthrown. At the moment, that seemed like a great success. So we got rid of a guy that we didn’t like, and we replaced him with someone else, the Shah, who would do anything we wanted. It seemed like the perfect ending.

    For the full interview, visit DemocracyNow.org

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