complete idiot's guide to the CIA
September 14, 2003
Of the 336 pages in The
Complete Idiot's Guide to the CIA the only thing most
Iranians care about -- i.e., the overthrow of Prime Minister
Mohammad Mossadegh -- fits neatly
into a few lines replete with a plethora of factual errors,
in a section dubiously called "Notable Successes".
In 1953, the shah [sic], recently overthrown [sic]
in Iran, was put back in power [sic] after the CIA [sic] overthrew
Dr. Mohammed [sic] Mossadegh, a left-wing [sic] revolutionary
[sic]. This successful [sic] joint CIA/United Kingdom op
was called Operation Ajax [sic].
And now, a brief explanation of the [sic]s:
should be written as Shah since it is a proper noun referring to
a specific person.
(2) The Shah was not overthrown. He fled. As in: "Goodbye,
I'm running for my safety. Screw the rest."
(3) The Shah never really wielded any significant "power" (or
much of anything) before 1953.
(4) This was a joint CIA/MI-6 operation, with most of the
guidance and strategy coming from MI-6.
(5) The good doctor preferred the spelling "Mohammad".
(6) Mossadegh was a nationalist through and through. If the
left-wing supported him (which conjecture itself is debatable),
it does not
make him a left-winger.
(7) It's true that Mossadegh introduced revolutionary ideas
(such as kicking the British leeches out of Iran's oil industry,
confidence and a certain bravado in a much-maligned populace,
and fighting antiquated ideas and dogmas), but he was the
popularly elected Prime Minister of the country. I guess
one could call
revolutionary in the sense of a Teddy Roosevelt, a Gandhi,
or a JFK.
(8) In the myopic limited view of an operation, it might
be deemed successful. But in the larger longer-term
view, its success
is certainly debatable. [see Stephen Kinzer's All
the Shah's Men]
(9) It's official CIA operational name is TPAJAX.
Did the author's realize this was a book for idiots and not
by idiots?! >>> See "Replies
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