Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
January 12, 2012
HISTORY/WAR: Iran 1953

Amir Taheri brings some perspective to the myths surrounding the CIA's involvement in Iran in 1953, one of the talking points most cherished by Communists, Islamists and Chomskyites these past several decades (all of whom use basically the same propaganda script), and most recently Ron Paul and his acolytes. One of the key points is the extent to which Mohammed Mossadeq precipitated the crisis - much like the crisis a few years back in Honduras - by taking a variety of extralegal steps that presented a grave threat to the existing legitimate government of Iran.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 11:55 PM | History • | War 2007-12 | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

What I take from this, as I do from so much of our foreign policy over the last 70 years or so, is the sheer ineptitude of the CIA. Time and again, it has proven it has no real knowledge of what is happening on the ground. How can we develop an intelligent foreign policy if the facts given to a president are always wrong/colored/shaded/unverified. Let's even give Bush the benefit of the doubt on Iraq. Not only should the CIA have known there were no WMD's, it (and let's face it, our State Department) should also have known about Hussein's bluffs were for Iran's benefit, not for the west's.

What happened in Iran in the early 50's? Can we really know all the facts now? Did we have a hand in ? Hopefully we did, because even then, the oil rich middle east had a vital strategic import (no pun intended). How could we not fully understand that in arming the mujahedin against the Soviets and not knowing what they were doing during and after the fact? We tend to give the CIA this enormous budget and in many ways, leave it to them to distribute it as needed. So if we really want our administrations, no matter who or what party is in control, we need to hold the CIA administration to account. Not by changing the director, that's only the smallest part of it.

Posted by: Daryl at January 13, 2012 9:40 AM

D-

I don't think we usually agree, but CIA and State seem to me to be woeful bureaucracies in need of reform. Part of our military problems stem from our inability to execute high level on the D and I parts of foreign policy DIME.

Additionally I think the E part tends to beholden to special interest groups in the US instead of driven by foreign policy and first principles. (Tariffs against Brazilian crops to help special interests in the US at the expense of -possibly- bringing Brazil closer to our influence.)

Rumsfield tried to cleanup the DoD (pre-9/11), but didn't really get very far. Less remembered is Rice made a big hoopla about cleaning up State in 2004 - not sure that happened either. Maybe Patreus can make an impact at CIA.

Posted by: Brendan at January 15, 2012 10:03 AM
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