Goditi milioni di eBook, audiolibri, riviste e tanto altro ancora con una prova gratuita

Solo $11.99/mese al termine del periodo di prova. Cancella quando vuoi.

All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror
All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror
All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror
E-book437 pagine7 ore

All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror

Valutazione: 4.5 su 5 stelle

4.5/5

()

Info su questo ebook

With a thrilling narrative that sheds much light on recent events, this national bestseller brings to life the 1953 CIA coup in Iran that ousted the country’s elected prime minister, ushered in a quarter-century of brutal rule under the Shah, and stimulated the rise of Islamic fundamentalism and anti-Americanism in the Middle East. Selected as one of the best books of the year by the Washington Post and The Economist, it now features a new preface by the author on the folly of attacking Iran.

Nota del redattore

In the news…

As tensions heat up between the US and Iran, this journalist’s account of the CIA-backed coup that overthrew the Iranian prime minister in 1953 sheds light on how the attack’s aftershocks continue to rattle relations today.

LinguaEnglish
EditoreWiley
Data di uscita1 gen 2008
ISBN9781620455302
Leggi anteprima
Autore

Stephen Kinzer

Stephen Kinzer is the author of many books, including The True Flag, The Brothers, Overthrow, and All the Shah’s Men. An award-winning foreign correspondent, he served as the New York Times bureau chief in Nicaragua, Germany, and Turkey. He is a senior fellow at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University, and writes a world affairs column for the Boston Globe. He lives in Boston.

Leggi altro di Stephen Kinzer

Correlato a All the Shah's Men

Ebook correlati

Articoli correlati

Categorie correlate

Recensioni su All the Shah's Men

Valutazione: 4.5 su 5 stelle
4.5/5

30 valutazioni13 recensioni

Cosa ne pensi?

Tocca per valutare

La recensione deve contenere almeno 10 parole

  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    Very informative providing valuable insights from those stressful and the role of Shahs Men
  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    Hindsight, of course, is 20/20, but this is certainly a damning indictment of the shortsightedness of American foreign policy in the Middle East.
  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    Short primer on Iranian history, then fairly detailed account of the rise of the secular, populist Mossadegh and the British-spurred, American-financed coup against him. Truman sympathized with nationalist aspirations, but Eisenhower (and the Dulles brothers in charge of foreign policy) was more sympathetic to fears of Communist takeover, even though that wasn’t really what was going on in Iran. So America backed the shah, because he was friendlier to Britain’s oil interests, and bought “stability” for 25 years at the cost of brutal repression and then passionate anti-Americanism when bottled-up popular demands finally exploded. Depressing but useful history, emphasizing the mismatch between Iranian aspirations (not to be stripped of their oil for a pittance, not to be treated like lesser human beings by the British) and British/American preoccupations (global dominance, Communism).

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile

  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    This is the history of the first American intervention in Iran: the 1953 CIA coup that ousted the popular and democratically elected prime minister Mohammed Mossadegh and enabled the implementation of the quarter century brutal regime of the Shah Resa Palavi. This coup tarnished , almost sigle handedly, the up to then pristine U.S. reputation in that part of the world and it left a deep scar in the collective memory of iranians up to the present day. At a time when the western powers (an the U.S. particularly) appear to have forgotten the way Iran (or Persia, as she was then known) was treated by them in the first half of the 20th century, this is a very welcome addition to the non specialist literature.

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile

  • Valutazione: 3 su 5 stelle
    3/5
    A study of the CIA's overthrow of the democratically elected government of Iran in 1952 at the urgings of Great Britian so as to restore the British control of the nationalized oil industry and reinstall the hereditary Shah.
  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    A clear, concise history of 50+ years in US, Iran, and UK relations and the coup that toppled Mossadegh's government, motivated by Britain's need to control Iran's oil supply and the Eisenhower administrations rising fear of potential growing communist influence. You meet the major players: Truman, Mossadegh, Churchill, the Shah, Eisenhower, the Dulles brothers, and Kermit Roosevelt, the grandson of Teddy Roosevelt and a CIA agent, who masterminded the plan. The author then takes you full circle to today when he visits Mossadegh's house at Ahmad Abad, Iran, in 2002 and confronts the confused legacy left to the Iranian people, weighing short term political gains vs. long term consequences.
  • Valutazione: 5 su 5 stelle
    5/5
    All the Shah's Men is a journalistic approach to the events leading up to the 1953 American installation of the Shah in Iran. The multiple causes - British and American fear of Russia in the Cold War, British attempts to regain their crumbling colonial power, Iranian ambivalence over whether to cooperate with or expel Western forces - all piled up, necessitating a drastic move in some direction or another.The book is well-written, driven less by polished political theorizing and more by the way in which Kinzer fleshes out the primary actors in the coup. His journalism is even-handed; the actions of Kermit Roosevelt, who took the lead in CIA work in Iran, may be either lauded or criticized. Similarly, Mohammad Mossadegh, the favored Iranian leader prior to the US's involvement, emerges as neither a hero nor a villain, but simply a man facing foreign adversity that must be dealt with. Kinzer merely reports the political story as cleanly as possible, and readers learn the larger-than-life personas who were involved on all sides.The book wraps up with a reflection: was the American coup ultimately a good thing or a bad thing? Truly, without knowing the other routes that history may have taken, it's impossible to say. If Russia had seized control instead (as the West was terrified they would), their control of the oil and physical location of Iran would have had a large impact on the outcome of the Cold War. On the other hand, the US coup incited such vehement dislike for Western power that one may pinpoint the beginning of present day Islamic anti-Western terrorism at the meddling of the US in 1953. However one approaches it, though, the 1953 coup stands as a critical turning point in twentieth century politics, whose impact is so far-reaching that our present understanding probably does not fully encompass it.
  • Valutazione: 5 su 5 stelle
    5/5
    Stephen Kinzer is a veteran NYT reporter covering US foreign policy around the globe, including Nicaragua in the 1980’s. In All the Shah’s Men Kinzer turns in a solid journalistic report that is also a compelling story of the CIA’s 1953 overthrow of the elected Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh. Kinzer sets up the coup d’état story by first briefly relating Great Britain’s sordid history in Iran. The British treated Iran as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (later to be known as British Petroleum or BP for short). Nationalist movements were afoot across the globe after WW II and Iran was no exception. In 1951, Mossadegh’s government nationalized Anglo-Iranian but that achieved less than Iran had hoped and it led to a protracted struggle with the British government for control of Iranian oil. As Kinzer relates, Great Britain, especially after Churchill's return to power in 1951, refused to recognize that the sun had indeed set on the British Empire and wanted to turn the clock back by regain its prior degree of control over Iran and its oil. Failing that Churchill tried to get the US government to intervene and put a stop to nationalization before the colonial world was completely `lost'. They did not find Truman particularly receptive to the notion that saving British colonies was a vital US interest. Changing their tune, they instead trumpeted fears of a Soviet takeover. When Eisenhower won election in 1952, the Brits immediately began plotting. They found particularly responsive ears in the Dulles brothers who headed the State Department and the CIA. Kinzer closely describes the CIA efforts to turn the people against Mossadegh by creating instability and chaos - or at least making Tehran seem so. Operation Ajax was the plan hatched and implemented by Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. (TR's grandson) to discredit Mossadegh through black propaganda, mob actions, and bribery. The plot to remove Mossadegh and replace him with a general acceptable to the US and Greta Britain initially failed. Roosevelt was about to leave at the strong suggestion of his CIA bosses in Washington, but then decided to stay and try again the following days (The Shah meanwhile fled at the first sign of danger.). The coup of course succeeded on the second try. The Shah returned and soon became the real power in the Iranian government. The Shah obligingly signed very favorable terms to split oil revenue with the US and Great Britain. Mossadegh was imprisoned for three years and then kept under house arrest for the remainder of his life. One of the book's highlights is Kinzer's poignant report of his post-revolution trip he managed to make to this house in a village outside of Tehran. Kinzer's reporting is excellent and his story would be a highly enjoyable thriller except that it relates actual events and the lost possibilities. One can only wonder how the world would be different if the US had adhered more to Truman's line than Eisenhower's in its relations to the former colonial empires. A very fine book and highly recommended, especially to anyone to young to remember the revelations in the 1970s of the US government's direct role in numerous post-WW II coups around the world that began with Iran. The book probably merits five stars if evaluated solely as straight reporting and perhaps it is unfair to downgrade the book a little for not pursuing the analysis of how this coup helped set the course of US history in the Middle East. Kinzer spends only a few pages connecting the dots between the 1953 coup and the 1979 Islamic revolution and one wishes that he would have said more because he obviously had more to say. Kinzer has written a new book, Overthrow: America's Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq, that relates fourteen such episodes beginning in Hawaii in 1893 and continuing to the Iraq war (and one does not doubt that history will require a sequel).
  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    A gripping history of the first covert operation by the CIA to overthrow the popularly elected government of another nation in 1953. That nation is Iran and the deposed leader is Mohammad Mosaddeq, the Iranian prime minister who dared stand up against Western imperialism. The fascinating thing about this book is that for much of Mosaddeq's reign many US leaders supported Iran's self-determination and attempts at democracy. Iran's squabble was with Great Britain, especially regarding the exploitative nature of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company. When Mosaddeq nationalized Iranian oil, British leaders wanted him removed, but needed US approval which was eventually gained by the specter of Communism. A number of familiar names play a role in the plot: Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, CIA director Allan Dulles, CIA agent Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. (grandson of Theodore), and Norman Schwarzkopf, Sr. (father of the Desert Storm commander). Kinzer tells the story in great detail with the ultimate outcome balanced on the coming together of some very unlikely eventsKinzer concludes that the immediate result - a stable and anti-communist Iran under the Shah - was beneficial to the United States but the long-term results were disastrous. The Shah's tyrannical rule in Iran, and the knowledge that the US supported him, turned most Iranians virulently against the United States. When revolutionary Iranians took hostages at the US embassy in 1979 it was because the embassy had been a base of covert activity in 1953. Finally, it set a pattern of CIA-sponsored activities in other parts of the world that havecontributed to the loss of the USA's image as a standard-bearer of freedom.
  • Valutazione: 5 su 5 stelle
    5/5
    History for me is exciting and interesting. History books can be a shaky proposition, a lot are boring and dull. They read like a brochure for watching grass grow. But some history writers can really translate the power of history into a great story. Stephen Kinzer is one of those writers. All the Shah's Men is a fantastic book, I could not put it down. He not only thoroughly explains the Irainian Coup of 1953, and the West's involvement, but he paces the book like a political thriller (which it truly is). Anyone who wishes to know why the middle east is in the state it is now, and why the west in general and America specifically are despised, must read this book. I can't recommend it enough.
  • Valutazione: 4 su 5 stelle
    4/5
    In-depth look at the US led coup against Mossedegh in Iraq in 1953. Well researched and well written account, with an excellent summary of thoughts about the event. John Perkins mentions the coup in _Confessions of an Economic Hit Man_ as being a watershed event leading to many other similar actions.
  • Valutazione: 5 su 5 stelle
    5/5
    The British were convinced all of Persia's oil belonged to them. Then the helpful Americans got into the act, engineering the overthrow of the democratically-elected Iranian government, installing the Shah, and leading to the wonderful era of peace and secular rationalism that now flourishes.
  • Valutazione: 5 su 5 stelle
    5/5
    Short but good: Journalist Stephen Kinzer provides in "All the Shah's Men" a short history of the CIA-organized 1953 coup that overthrew Mohammed Mossadegh, the democratically-elected but controversial Prime Minister of Iran. Kinzer writes in a very engaging, fast-moving manner, making his book seem at times more of a drama than a history.Kinzer interweaves three main topics to construct his narrative: the coup itself, the history of British and American interest and activity in Iran, and the stories of the two main characters in the historical drama: Kermit Roosevelt Jr., the CIA agent in charge of staging the coup, and Mossadegh himself. Indeed, a nearly complete (though brief) biography of Mossadegh is given over the course of the book, while many other important actors (including the Shah) receive relatively little attention.Kinzer's historical overview focuses largely on Britain's oil interests in Iran and how the Eisenhower administration's fear of Communist expansion eventually led to Americans taking a leading role in the coup. Even more interesting were Kinzer's brief looks at some of the effects of the coup. First among these, of course, is the Iranian Revolution of 1979, which overthrew the Shah the 1953 coup restored to power. Perhaps even more important was the enthusiastic response the coup received among leading American politicians and intelligence officers, who were eager to test out similar strategies in other uncooperative countries. Kinzer presents the initial success of the 1953 Iranian coup as a main cause of the disastrous CIA-organized overthrow of the (democratically-elected) government of Guatemala one year later. Although Kinzer does not mention the topic, I couldn't help but notice many similarities between his description of the Iranian coup and recent events in Venezuela, where the United States has also shown itself eager to get rid of a controversial but democratically-elected leader.I feel I should emphasize that Kinzer does not actually present the 1953 coup as the "Roots of Middle East Terror". I suspect this unfortunately exaggerated subtitle was added by the publisher in order to increase sales. However, it cannot be denied that the coup was a very important event nonetheless. It derailed one of the Middle East's most promising democracies, set the stage for the 1979 Revolution, and helped shape America's disastrous Cold War policy of overthrowing potentially uncooperative governments and installing more accommodating dictators in their place.A book as short as "All the Shah's Men" obviously cannot be complete in its coverage and is certainly not the last word on the 1953 coup and its effects. However, it is a wonderful introduction to the topic, engaging and illuminating although brief. Strongly recommended for those with any interest in Iran, the Middle East in general, or American foreign policy during the Cold War.

Anteprima del libro

All the Shah's Men - Stephen Kinzer

PREFACE TO THE 2008 EDITION

The Folly of Attacking Iran

More than half a century has passed since the United States deposed the only democratic government Iran ever had. This book describes that fateful operation and reviews its disastrous consequences. It tells a story that should serve as an object lesson. Violent intervention in Iran seemed like a good idea in 1953, and for a time it appeared to have succeeded. Now, however, it is clear that this intervention not only brought Iran decades of tragedy, but also set in motion forces that have gravely undermined American national security.

As militants in Washington urge a second American attack on Iran, the story of the first one becomes more urgently relevant than ever. It shows the folly of using violence to try to reshape Iran. In 1953, the United States sought to promote its strategic interest by attacking an Iranian regime of which it disapproved. The results were exactly the opposite of those for which American leaders had hoped.

If the United States had not sent agents to depose Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh in 1953, Iran would probably have continued along its path toward full democracy. Over the decades that followed, it might have become the first democratic state in the Muslim Middle East, and perhaps even a model for other countries in the region and beyond. That would have profoundly changed the course of history—not simply Iranian or even Middle Eastern history, but the history of the United States and the world.

From the perspective of today—the perspective of those who have lived through the September 11 attacks, the Iraq war, and all the attendant threats that have emerged to destabilize the modern world—the 1953 intervention in Iran may be seen as a decisive turning point in twentieth-century history. By placing Mohammad Reza Shah back on his Peacock Throne, the United States brought Iran’s long, slow progress toward democracy to a screeching halt. The Shah ruled with increasing repression for twenty-five years. His repression produced the explosion of the late 1970s, later known as the Islamic Revolution. That revolution brought to power a radical clique of fanatically anti-Western clerics who have worked relentlessly, and often violently, to undermine American interests around the world.

In 1953, the United States deposed a popular Iranian nationalist who embraced fundamental American principles and replaced him with a tyrant who despised much of what the United States stands for. Today the West finds itself facing a regime in Tehran that embodies threats far more profound than those that it sought to crush in 1953. In the White House, the impulse to attack Iran seems just as strong as it was then. It is not difficult to imagine the argument some of President Bush’s advisers might make in seeking to persuade him. We suffered the September 11 attacks because President Clinton was not bold enough to crush a growing threat, they would say, so let’s be real men and crush the threat that’s emerging now, rather than leave it to the next administration.

Why attack Iran? Those who favor the idea offer a variety of answers: Iran must not be allowed to become a nuclear power; Iran poses an existential threat to Israel; Iran is the heart of an emerging Shiite crescent that destabilizes the Middle East; Iran supports radical groups in nearby countries; Iran is helping to kill American soldiers in Iraq; Iran has ordered terror attacks in foreign countries; Iran’s people are oppressed and need Americans to liberate them.

There is also a geopolitical argument for attacking Iran. Since the beginning of the Cold War era, the United States has used one country in the Middle East as a platform from which to project power across the region. For a quarter-century it was the Shah’s Iran. Now it is Saudi Arabia, but prospects for long-term stability there are uncertain. The fantasy that Iraq would become America’s key regional ally after a U.S. invasion has dissipated. Some in Washington have a new one: that when the dust clears after an American attack on Iran, it will be stable and friendly to the United States.

The most obvious reason for attacking Iran would be to win access to its vast oil supply. When Winston Churchill helped to seize Iran’s oil industry in the 1920s, he called it a prize from fairyland beyond our wildest dreams. It still is. Regardless of what policymakers in Washington or anywhere else may say, no country ever acts in Iran without thinking about its oil reserves. That is especially true of the Bush administration, which is more closely allied with the oil industry than any other administration in American history.

President Bush and those around him may have other reasons to feel tempted by the idea of invading Iran. Some believe, against all evidence, that the key to victory in Iraq is crushing the regime in Iran. Bush himself has said several times that he expects history to absolve him, an argument that can be used to justify even the craziest presidential decisions. Beneath these arguments lies another, more diffuse impulse.

American leaders, emphatically including President Bush himself, believe that since the United States is a great power, it has the right and responsibility to act dramatically whenever trouble emerges anywhere in the world. This impulse dates at least to the age of Thucydides, who w