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The US has been waging war against Iran since the 1950’s, but you wouldn’t know that by consuming US news

June 24, 2019

The most recent saber rattling by the Trump administration against the nation of Iran is nothing new. However, the way that the US news media and media pundits frame the issue, is that Iran simply hates America.

The reality is that Iran has good reason to hate the US, considering the fact that the US has been waging war against Iran since the CIA coup against the Iranian government in 1953. The President of Iran had nationalized the oil industry, which pissed off the British, so the British asked the US to help them overthrow the government of Mohammad Mossadegh.

This CIA coup is well documented in Stephen Kinzer’s book, All the Shah’s Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror. Another good source on the topic, is the 23 minute video produced by the Real News Network.

After the CIA overthrew Mossadegh, they helped to install the Shah of Iran. From the Eisenhower administration through the Carter administration, US presidents supported the Shah who brutalized the Iranian people, using his own death squads known as the Savak. The US government was well aware of the brutality of the Iranian government, but they didn’t care, because the Iranian government, under the leadership of the Shah was an excellent ally of the US in the Middle East.

In 1979, the Iranian people rose up against the Shah, with their own revolution. The US new media again painted the Iranians as evil people during the “hostage crisis,” yet provided little context to the US/Iranian history.

The Reagan campaign used the hostage crisis in Iran to help it win the 1980 election in the US, even though US policy makers had known more about what was happening than what the US public was led to believe, as is revealed in the declassified documents  from that period. 

The Reagan administration then used the growing tension between the Iranian government and the Iraqi government to further destabilize the region. Although the US provided military aid to both Iran and Iraq during the 10 year war, the bulk of the US military aid went to Iraq. Iraq used chemical weapons against the Kurds in Iran, even though the US never made the use of those Weapons of Mass Destruction an issue like it would in 2003.

The US always wants to paint Iran as a terrorist country, yet the US has military bases completely surrounding Iran. This topic is explored in Dan Kovalik’s book, The Plot to Attack Iran: How the CIA and the Deep State Have Conspired to Vilify Iran. This ongoing vilification of Iran is well documented by the group Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting, a group which acts as a watchdog of the largest US news sources. In their most recent critique of US news coverage of US/Iranian relations, they make it clear how the US media tends to present the US State Department view of what is happening. For more on US media bias when reporting on Iran, check out FAIR’s Iran coverage archives

Lastly, while Liberals are upset about the Bolton/Trump threats of war against Iran, one can not deny that the US position on Iran hasn’t changed much since the 1953 coup by the CIA. This 65-year relationship with Iran has been bi-partisan, no matter who occupies the White House. I am all in favor of opposing US imperial wars, but we can’t just be against war when a Republican sits in the White House.

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