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The United States And Iran: To What Extent Did The United States Influence The Iranian Revolution?

2323 words - 10 pages

The United States and Iran:
To what extent did the United States influence the Iranian Revolution? 
Table of Contents
Table of Contents………………………………………………………………………………2
A. Plan of the Investigation…………………………………………………………………..3
B. Summary of Evidence…………………………………………………………………..3-5
C. Evaluation of Sources…………………………………………………………………...5-6
D. Analysis…………………………………………………………………………………6-7
E. Conclusion………………………………………………………………………………….
F. Bibliography………………………………………………………………………………..

A. Plan of the Investigation
The focus of this investigation is on the United States’ influence on the National Revolution of Iran of 1978-1979. Topics investigated include the sociocultural and political differences between the two countries which contributed to the revolution, and the impact of the actions of leaders of both nations on the outcome of the conflict. The underlying interests of the United States are considered, and are connected to its actions in the struggle, while post-revolutionary interactions between the two countries are not included in this investigation.
In this investigation, several sources detailing the conditions in Iran before the revolution will be utilized to identify the factors leading up to its revolt. To reach a conclusion as to what the extent of the influence the United States had on the Iranian revolution actually was, other sources detailing specific events during the revolution will also be used.
B. Summary of Evidence
In the early nineteenth century, the discovery of oil in Iran piqued the interest of Western countries (Stock). In the next century, Iran saw several revolutions, twice due to its resourceful value and proclaimed neutrality in each World War (Stock). Each new government was installed and heavily influenced by the powers of Britain, the Soviet Union, and the United States, each interested in control of Iran’s oil supply (Stock). In October 1925, the shah of Iran, Ahmad Shah Qajar, was deposed by a coup d’état led by army officer Reza Shah Pahlavi, with support from Britain (Arjomand, xii). In 1933, the new shah signed a 60 year contract with the Anglo-Persian Oil Company, which allowed the British company to extract large amounts of crude oil in exchange for modest royalties (Stock). In addition, he began a process of modernization, overseeing improvements in roads, education, and public health (Stock). During the Second World War, a joint British-Soviet invasion following the shah’s decision to remain neutral led to his forced abdication of his own son, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, as the new shah of Iran (Stock). In 1951, Prime Minister Muhammad Mosaddeq attempted to nationalize Iran’s oil industry (Arjomand, xii). Because this act threatened oil revenues, the United States Central Intelligence Agency began working to replace Mosaddeq with a pro-Western Prime Minister, and succeeded in doing so in 1953 (January, 21). The shah never again held the same public support that he did before Mosaddeq’s removal, and he later...

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