The news coverage of the election in Iran makes little note of how anomalous support of elections in the Middle East is in the West. So I believe the real story is being missed. The headlines should read “US supports elections in Iran.”
I say the support of elections in Iran by a Western government is an anomaly because it is exactly that. In 1953 Iran had an elected government, but the big Anglo-American oil companies didn’t like that so out went the elected government and in went the fascist government that the oil companies wanted:
In 1951 Dr. Mohammed Mossadegh was elected prime minister. As prime minister, Mossadegh became enormously popular in Iran after he nationalized Iran’s oil reserves. In response, Britain embargoed Iranian oil and, amidst Cold War fears, invited the United States to join in a plot to depose Mossadegh, and in 1953 President Dwight D. Eisenhower authorized Operation Ajax. The operation was successful, and Mossadegh was arrested on 19 August 1953. After Operation Ajax, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi’s rule became increasingly autocratic. With American support, the Shah was able to rapidly modernize Iranian infrastructure, but he simultaneously crushed all forms of political opposition with his intelligence agency, SAVAK.
The Shah continued in power until he was evicted by a popular revolution, not supported by the USA. Furthermore, those who had overthrown the Shah quickly instituted an Republic, leading up to the elections we are now seeing. Recall also that the present president would probably not have been elected were it not for the anti-US backlash in the wake of the US invasion of Iraq. So Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is our man, like it or not. So strange that after we have done everything to foil democracy in Iran and then doing everything in our power to make sure that Ahmadinejad is elected, the US has suddenly found a liking for free and fair elections in Iran.