Time to Check In on Our Relations with the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company

Apparently, the Brits are calling Americans–including President Obama–xenophobic for referring to the company shitting up our Gulf  as “British Petroleum.” So for this installment of my now-regular reflection on how, fifty-some years ago, we overthrew a democratically-elected government for that company shitting up our Gulf, I’m going to call it the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company.

You see, the “special relationship” between us and the AIOC is suffering a bit of a strain right now. (h/t this very good Yves post)

Tensions escalated sharply on Wednesday when the U.S. Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar, said he would demand that BP pay the lost wages of oil workers in the Gulf region idled because of the administration’s order to halt new deepwater drilling for six months. That demand could add hundreds of millions of dollars to BP’s obligations.

Mr. Hayward immediately canceled an employee town hall meeting and a trip to review clean-up on the Louisiana coast, and gathered his visibly shaken executives at the crisis center in Houston. At a top management call between Houston and London to review its “Sub-sea and Surface” agenda, the top item on “Surface” issues suddenly became “Washington politics.”

“This demand is chilling,” said one executive in the meeting. “The administration keeps pushing the boundaries on what we are responsible for.”

Tony Hawyward is apparently aghast that the Obama Administration might consider nationalizing BP’s AIOC’s profits to actually pay for shitting up our Gulf.

Mr. Salazar’s comments, and reports that the U.S. Justice Department was looking into BP’s plan to pay a dividend, touched off a rout of BP’s shares.


As the oil giant’s stock fell, Mr. Hayward holed up in a makeshift office at BP’s crisis center here and worked his cell phone relentlessly. Among those he called: leaders of the U.K. government, which had until Thursday stayed largely on the sidelines as tensions mounted between BP and the Obama administration.

Which is leading the British MOTUs to grow impatient with David Cameron’s government for not more aggressively defending BP AIOC against the American demand that BP AIOC actually pay for shitting up our Gulf.

The U.K. government has come under mounting pressure from business associations and some U.K. lawmakers, angry at the increasingly aggressive rhetoric coming out of Washington.

I’m actually really, really fascinated by this development. Ultimately, the biggest threat BP AIOC has over us is bankruptcy, thereby shielding its assets from US seizure (ironically, such a bankruptcy might look a lot like the GM restructuring). Short of that, though, the British MOTUs appear to want to escalate this into a foreign policy issue. And ultimately, they’re demanding that the needs of BP AIOC take precedence over the well-being of Americans in the Gulf.

It’s a familiar demand, since it’s the same one AIOC made those fifty-some years ago. Only back then, AIOC made the demand of brown people, not Americans (though I’m guessing brown Americans may well suffer disproportionately from this BP mess).

I guess maybe we believed a company with “Anglo” in its name–that, plus the “special relationship” that binds us Anglos–would ensure that Americans were never asked to pay the same price those Iranians were.

Abadan refinery picture from wikimedia.

102 replies
  1. sojourner says:

    Just WHAT is so special about BP or whatever we want to call it?

    They got caught — in the worst way possible — cutting corners, lying, ignoring laws. In the interim, they are making a horrible mess because of their inept management.

    They still seem to think they should be allowed to just get away with it all.

    Tough life, isn’t it Tony?

    • emptywheel says:

      I wouldn’t be surprised if they do. Not only will they shield their assets. But eventually AIOP BP is going to be cut off of leases in the Gulf, and becoming a new company (aka Xe) will be the quickest way to do so.

      • fatster says:

        Thanks so much for responding, EW. I wish I had some confidence that Obamarahma will take all steps they can to prevent BP from simply skating away from this after paying some sort of minimal fines, shedding a part of itself it can sacrifice without much pain, etc.

        • emptywheel says:

          Well, corporate structure is all about limiting liability, right? Granted, those limits have wildly expanded of late. But the reality is that corporations are designed precisely to be able to slink away without paying its bills.

          Read Yves post on this. If we were brilliant, we might be able to use this to reexamine the whole concept of limited liability…

          • rosalind says:

            If we were brilliant

            *heavy sigh*

            at this point i’d settle for functionally competent.

          • fatster says:

            “If we were brilliant. . . ” Well, you certainly are but most of those in High Places aren’t, and there’s our problem. And what Rosalind just said @ 9.

            Thanks for making sure I read Yves’ post.

          • DWBartoo says:

            “Limited liability” is the “flip-side” of the “vile maxim”.

            A serious discussion of the essential and underlying purpose of the corporate “person”, would be a serious step toward the possibility of the survival of the human species.

            One hopes it may happen, EW.


  2. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The Lyall and Werdigier piece in the NYT is flawed, insofar as it relies on comments from City investment fund managers; from conservative politicians such as London’s conservative mayor, Boris Johnson, and conservative legislator Lord Tebbit; and from a newspaper, the Daily Telegraph, so friendly to conservative causes that its moniker is the Torygraph.

    Expecting to hear nuanced commentary from such sources would be like expecting to hear MSNBC make a sell recommendation on any stock (and then to see its price go down), or to expect the WSJ’s editorial page agree with the factual reporting of its best journalists.

    America and Britain may be countries separated by their common language, but that those sources are reliably and consistently conservative is neither rocket science nor arcane. One could pick it up after an undergraduate year abroad, or from a few years’ reading of the Internet and a basic American-English cultural dictionary.

    The sources cited by Lyall and Werdigier are reliably conservative and at least mildly xenophobic, meaning anti-EU as well as as anti-US. That said, it is true that BP and Royal Dutch Shell are considered cultural as well as a corporate institutions, and that the tightly-knit City community relies on it for a “safe” investment – and have sold their shares as such for generations. That means fund managers have to portray any downward slide in BP’s performance or prospects as caused by something other than their failure to disclose the the inherent risks associated with its business operations.

    All of which means that both companies, like their banking brethren in the City, have enormous direct and indirect political clout and reason to blame BP’s problems on something or someone other than BP. It actually speaks well of Cameron that he would resist being made a public knight errant for a flawed King BP so early in his administration.

    It is BP’s behavior that is cause for concern, not that its corporate domicile is in the UK. American criticism has actually been mild compared to the social, environmental and environmental damage the company has caused through a pattern of abuse of and disdain for safety and safety regulations.

    BP is a focus of American concerns not because it is well-heeled (profits of US$17 billion last year alone) and well-managed. It is the focus of American ire – on Main Street and inside the Beltway – because it is the owner and operator of a well that is fast becoming the biggest environmental polluter in American history.

    The Brits are often more environmentally conscious than Americans; they are well ahead of us in recognizing the environmental threats caused by such things as pollution, climate change, recycling of lead and mercury-containing computer equipment, and genetic engineering of crops.

    Mr. Obama would be wise to find common ground with the Brits and other Europeans on that score. Defensively, it would protect his just criticism from unjust attacks. It would also help persuade the world that he recognizes a legitimate environmental disaster when he sees one and is willing to act positively to contain it and to lay the costs where they belong, not on the taxpayer. And it would help him, were he so to choose, in building a consensus to up environmental rules that apply to a global industry, just as we need tighter rules governing investment practices that threaten the global economy.

  3. JohnLopresti says:

    Is there any more about the image at the top of the post? One of the salient features of the sixties **rebellious** youth movements was their abhorence of the headstrong follies of the older generation. From the photo, that might be a polluted site based on old technology, though perhaps standard fare for the epoch in refinery construction. In times past, gross pollution from refineries was accepted by the public, as if there were no toxic offsite spreading that could harm people and environment. It was a long way from the postbellum to Love Canal to Super Fund, then to several US administrations which fairly suspended Super Fund implementation. I think the US should activate a reconfigured Super Fund to help BP, and the entire region, with cleanup.

  4. MadDog says:

    OT – From the DOJ, a speech by David Kris, DOJ’s head of the National Security Division:

    Thank you for inviting me here today.

    I’ve been asked to discuss the role of law enforcement as a counterterrorism tool. This is a timely subject: you may have noticed recently some talk about whether the federal courts should be used against international terrorists. I will discuss this issue in four main parts.

    First, I’ll review the recent history of our national counterterrorism strategy, focused in particular on the origins and evolution of the Justice Department’s National Security Division (NSD), which I head. Knowing a little about NSD may be interesting to you anyway (I hope), but it’s also an important part of how the country came to a consensus, at least until recently, about the appropriate role of law enforcement as a counterterrorism tool.

    Second, I will try to sketch out a conceptual framework for thinking about the role of law enforcement in the current conflict. The idea here is to identify the right questions, the right way of approaching the policy debate that we are now engaged in as a country. Identifying the right questions, I think, is not as easy as it sounds, but it is, as always, critically important.

    Third, I’ll try to answer these questions that I have identified. To do this, I’ll briefly describe some of the empirical evidence about how law enforcement has been used to combat terrorism. I’ll also offer a comparison between civilian law enforcement and its two major alternatives – detention under the law of war and prosecution in a military commission. This comparison will not be nearly as detailed as you would need to make intelligent decisions about public policy, let alone about particular cases, but it will give you an idea of the major pros and cons of each system as I see them.

    Fourth and finally, I will conclude with some ideas on how to improve the effectiveness of law enforcement as a counterterrorism tool. Here I’ll address, among other things, the idea of legislation on the public-safety exception to Miranda that has been discussed of late…

    • fatster says:

      Thanks so much, MadDog. I was looking forward to kicking up my heels a bit on this weekend, and now I’ve had to try and comprehend what Kris was saying. Here are just a few examples of things that strained my brain:

      “When I say that law enforcement helps us win this war, I mean that it helps us disrupt, defeat, dismantle and destroy our adversaries (without destroying ourselves or our way of life in the process).” [I guess it depends on what one means by “our way of life.” I liked thinking of the Fourth Amendment, for example, as part of “our way of life”–and he does discuss FISA right off the bat.]

      “Under the law of war, if it’s tested through a habeas corpus petition, the government need only persuade the judge by a preponderance of the evidence that the petitioner is part of al Qaeda or affiliated forces, though that is not always easy, as our track record in the Guantanamo cases has shown.” {Ahem.]

      ” . . . it is simply a hardheaded, pragmatic recognition that in some cases, where we need help from abroad, we will have to rely on law enforcement rather than military detention or prosecution.” [Ends vs means, you think? And I wonder how much weight this argument has relative to his other arguments.]

      And, MadDog, please tell me what this means: “For law of war detention, the test is reliability, which may in practical effect be pretty similar to a basic voluntariness requirement.” Thank you.

  5. prostratedragon says:

    The Guardian has provided just the aid to impoverished imaginations, speaking only of those Jack-wavers who’ve been out and about today, that I was hoping to find, in the form of an online app that generates an overlay of the spill extent onto a map of the region around whatever location the user gives it. There’s a picture showing central London as the home point.

  6. qweryous says:

    Give it another few months of unstopped oil polluting the Gulf of Mexico, the Eastern seaboard of the US, and where does it go next…

    They’ll be longing for the days when it was called British Petroleum.

    On a tangent:

    A newly coined phrase: “H*yward Adjustment”(fm).

    A “H*yward Adjustment”(fm) is necessary when the publicly released numbers (these may be either measured or estimated numbers) for an event are no longer believed by experts, the media, and the public. Thus it becomes necessary to ‘adjust the numbers’ so that the excuse making, minimization, and coverup (if any) may continue.

    A “H*yward Adjustment”(fm) may ONLY be issued by a responsible party (one about to be in legal or monetary trouble that is),a regulator responsible for preventing what has occurred;or by any political appointee, career employee or bureaucrat responsible for containing or ‘cleaning up’ the problem. Another way to analyze this: anyone subject to congressional subpoena is probably qualified and able to make a “H*yward Adjustment”(fm).

    Similar adjustments or estimates fabricated by the media are to be considered normal reporting and unless originated by one of the previously mentioned ‘responsible parties’ or ‘friend of a responsible party’ ARE NOT a “H*yward Adjustment”(fm).

    It has been postulated that the minimum “H*yward Adjustment”(fm) should be a 50% increase or decrease depending on the nature of the disaster being obfuscated.

    ‘Bad numbers’ are only subject to H*yward Adjustment”(fm) to increase the magnitude of the disaster.

    ‘Good numbers’ likewise are subject to “H*yward Adjustment”(fm) only to decrease the magnitude of the good news reported previously.

    To prevent confusion one additional feature has been defined by agreement:
    If an ongoing disaster is somehow mitigated, then by definition adjusting reality based correct and honest numbers to other reality based correct and honest numbers CAN NEVER be called a “H*yward Adjustment”(fm). Such an adjustment may be called many things, but by definition it is not a “H*yward Adjustment”(fm). The same is true for changing numbers in reporting favorable events.

    In short: correct and honest numbers changing to other correct and honest numbers NEVER do so by a”H*yward Adjustment”(fm).

    In actual use “H*yward Adjustments”(fm) have been purposely confusing, and have occurred mainly in campaigns of misinformation and disinformation so further research is needed to determine the minimum “H*yward Adjustment”(fm) observed thus far.

    Related phenomena which interact with “H*yward Adjustments”(fm) and which frequently occur within close time and space proximity to the H*yward Adjustment”(fm) are known to include:

    1.Insensitive statements of many types.

    2.Ridiculous and easily disproven ‘statements of fact’ .

    3.Occasional slips which reveal that the speaker has a sense of personal entitlement and

    A. wants to get back to what they were doing.
    B. wants the mean reporters and media to stop asking questions.
    C. wants the mean comments to stop as there really is nothing wrong
    (until the next “H*yward Adjustment”(fm)).
    D. needs a vacation.
    E. wishes they were in one of those countries where his security can
    really ‘scare off’ the trespassers on the previously public
    property where they are interfering with the business of
    maintaining previously reported “H*yward Adjustments”(fm).

    Such phenomena are usually observed from those in the immediate group where the ‘official statements’ are issued.

    Additional disclaimers: any resemblance of the term “H*yward Adjustment”(fm) to current events, actual persons, and or entities which might be called Anglo-Iranian Oil Company in the future; any such resemblance is in the mind of the guilty parties, and they better get back to the cleanup.

    Researchers interested in the topic of “H*yward Adjustments”(fm) have postulated that once two or more “H*yward Adjustments”(fm) have occurred in the description of an ongoing event, that these “H*yward Adjustments”(fm) will continue to be issued on a regular basis until such time as the event and it’s aftermath are completely resolved.

    Report all observed “H*yward Adjustments”(fm) to the appropriate authorities.

    • fatster says:

      qweryous, I assume the “H*yward Adjustments” is your brain-child. You must let it shine forth in Seminal. You just must.

      Before you do, though, please tell me what is “fm”. “tm” = trade mark. “fm” = ???

      • qweryous says:

        qweryous, I assume the “H*yward Adjustments” is your brain-child.

        Why would you think that?

        “You must let it shine forth in Seminal. You just must.”

        I might, but don’t you have to hang around and converse with the other participants? If so that won’t work today. Don’t want to start the party and then have to leave. I will consider it though.

        Suggested activity to do soon:
        Insert the phrase in quotes into teh google. (search the exact phrase).

        Any conclusions?

        Regretfully must decline to answer the last question for the time being.

  7. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Obama would do well to create common cause with every coastal country in the world. What if millions of barrels of crude fouled the beaches of Dorset, Devon and Cornwall, the great estuaries in Scotland, the beaches of Barcelona and Brittany, Normandy and Amalfi, Greece, Egypt and Israel, Macau, Malaysia and Mauritius, Phuket, Rio and Capetown.

    This is the perfect opportunity to join forces with unlikely neighbors about managing the risks of global growth, global dependence on crude, and global vulnerability when we ignore renewable sources of energy. BP needn’t even be played as a bad guy, more as an exemplar of unrestrained growth and the downside of governments failing to partner protectively with giant corporations that put far more at risk in their operations than the assets they own.

    As with the need to reform Americans’ access to health care and the need to regulate global finance, this is not an opportunity that can best be used by someone who thinks the status quo is just peachy, for whom a return to “normal” is nirvana.

  8. bobschacht says:

    Ah, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company {sniff} {sigh}
    Well, thanks for another timely reminder. I’ve been working this week on a paper about an archaeological survey I did in 1974 about 200 miles north of Abadan. Those Brits were sniffing around for oil early on– they did a ground mapping survey of the whole of lowland SW Iran in 1917 (the “Basrah Survey”) just to familiarize themselves with the territory. I used a piece of that mapping in my current write-up.

    I’ll say this for the Iranian Revolution: they’ve kept most archaeologists out of that area for about 30 years, so no one has been over there to make my work obsolete.

    Bob in AZ

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        He certainly knew the Middle East better than the vast majority of his compatriots, having traveled rough there since student days, unheard of except for notable exceptions such as Burton. Despite his post-Edwardian era values and his personal demons, Lawrence respected the people and their cultures far more than they did, too, though not without reservation. He resented his time in Iraq and Iran after the Great War.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            In an earlier sense, meaning not as operatives but as gatherers of raw intelligence. Lawrence during the war, of course, was an adviser to and organizer of what we would now call guerilla forces.

  9. macaquerman says:

    we overthrew a democratically-elected government for that company shitting up our Gulf,

    it’s not true, but it sounds so good.

    • DWBartoo says:

      Ah, then macaquer, there was and is a more noble reason explaining why “…we overthrew a democratically-elected government …”?

      What might it be?

      Unless you deny the entire assertion?

      What is “not true”?

      I am curious.

      What do you regard as the truth?


      • macaquerman says:

        no more noble reason, DW, just that we were not moved to move against Mossedegh for love of the gooey Gulf-shitters.

        I dare deny none but that least syllable of Wheeler’s addition lest bmaz and the earl beat me into further clamorous whining

    • bmaz says:

      Why do you wander in here to crap on threads like that? That is not cool, and you have been pulling similar stuff just about every time you appear here. You are either uninformed, disingenuous or both.

      Iran’s Majlis parliament was indeed democratically elected. The Majlis elected Mosaddegh Prime Minister before he eventually became Premier. It was Mosaddegh and the Majlis that the CIA and the Brits overthrew in 1953 over oil and the AIOC which is effectively now BP.

      • macaquerman says:

        our actions were not in support of the British petroleum company, and we advised the British government to adjust the predatory terms of the contract with Iran.

        we pulled the coup to freeze out the Soviets. we only reluctantly approved the joint Soviet-British invasion of Iran in WWII and had several times met with vigorous resistance from the Soviets to our demands that they withdraw from Iranian territory.
        we regarded the increased prominence of the Tudah party in Mossadegh’s coalition as a sign that they might make a Soviet-backed attempt to muscle the old man aside after he first moved out the Shah.
        if you or the earl look into any history written of Iran in the 40s and 50s, you might take back some of your indignation.

        our motivations were not the same as those of the Brits and saying that we acted for the benefit of BP isn’t correct.
        I’ve rarely wondered in here, bmaz, and rarely have any cause to criticize Marcy, who has my entire respect and regard as the best person posting on any part of FDL. This makes a total of twice, IIRC and neither was any really robust attempt at damnation.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Your summary understates considerably the involvement and motivation of the CIA in its involvement with the Iranian coup in 1953. Anti-Soviet views may have dominated our thinking, and Iran’s physical location was important, but no one in the US government missed Iran’s uniquely valuable oil reserves any more than they underrated Iraq’s oil resources during the BushCheney administration.

          You are correct that our actions were not primarily motivated by support for the Brits or AIOC; we were acting in our own interests.

        • bmaz says:

          Interesting. I cannot refute what you describe; on the other hand there seem to be several reasons as to how/why Mossadegh was taken down and the oil and oil company are certainly in the middle of all. Not worth quibbling over at any rate, and I withdraw my sharp criticism. Bottom line is it had the effect as to liberating the progenitor of BP either way.

          • macaquerman says:

            thanks and don’t hesitate to defend wheeler. her work merits it.

            If I’m unwelcome here, say as much and I won’t return.

        • jdmckay0 says:

          our actions were not in support of the British petroleum company, and we advised the British government to adjust the predatory terms of the contract with Iran.

          Actually, that’s right… under Truman. For reasons unkown, IKE changed policy and approved coup… a blight on his record.

          we pulled the coup to freeze out the Soviets.

          Actually, that’s false. FOIA CIA docs are clear about that: we did it largely at behest of US oil interests, long salivating to get BP type piece of ME oil pie.

          we regarded the increased prominence of the Tudah party in Mossadegh’s coalition as a sign that they might make a Soviet-backed attempt to muscle the old man aside after he first moved out the Shah.

          Actually, that’s false as well. First of all, Mossadegh was not an “old man.” 2nd, he’d been trying to get Iran public’s attention to BP’s abuse of Iran’s oil resources for 20+ years: it had nothing to do w/Soviets, it had to do w/Iranian sovereignty. Period.

          Alleged Mossadegh ties to Soviets was part of CIA disinformation campaign, and something used to this day by right wingers to head off any thought of taking a 2nd look of that sorry affair… an event which precipitated, seeded and solidified what we now call such things as Extreme Islamic Funamentalism and such. This whole thing was grounds upon which Khomeni’s anti-US support lay.

          The ignorance of it all.

          if you or the earl look into any history written of Iran in the 40s and 50s, you might take back some of your indignation.

          There’s plenty of grounds for indignation. Britain literally took their oil, for nearly 50 years. It was BP’s largest producing field. Iran didn’t get squat out of it, and Mossadegh’s protestations to that effect fell on deaf ears there until late 40’s.

          As an example of that subjugation, in 1945 BP paid more to the crown in tax from Iranian fields than Iran got in royalties… about 4.5%.

          our motivations were not the same as those of the Brits

          Wrong: they were about the same… eg. to control Persian oil and profits.

          and saying that we acted for the benefit of BP isn’t correct.

          Actually, that’s about right.

          In last 10 yrs or so, there’s been flood of books from (mostly) conservative think-tank propogandists who’ve tried to rewrite that history, saying (as you did) the coup was to head off Soviet “threat”. There is no support for this in available (which is substantial) docs, and much support… actually, corroboration, this was done for oil.

          Kermit Roosevelt’s (eg: Teddy’s grandson and CIA’s lead guy on the coup) book said as much, long before first FOIA release.

          The Soviet thing you mention is a lie, just as Netanyahu/Likudniks saying GAZA has not humanitarian crisis is a lie.

        • captjjyossarian says:

          From what I’ve read, the US considered Mossadeg to have strong anti-communist credentials. But Ike’s admin decided that preserving the western alliance was more important. At the time we were still at war in Korea. The Brits were helping us in Korea but thier government did threaten to remove that support if the Iranian Oil issue was not resolved.

          The only fear of the Soviets overrunning Iran would have been related to the UK’s intent to use gunboat diplomacy… sending in the marines. If the Brits had done that, the US did fear that the Soviets would respond by invading. And the Brits had drawn up an invasion plan in 1951, operation codename “Buccanner”. The Brits wanted “their oil” back… badly.

          So yeah, America’s actions were based on what Ike’s admin believed to be in the US’s best interests. But the driving force was pressure from the United Kingdom, not concerns about the Tudah.

          The Brits tried to run the coup themselves in 1952 but they got caught trying to recruite General Fazlollah Zahedi. Mosaddeq shut down thier embassy, effectively kicking MI6 out of the country.

          • macaquerman says:

            capt. check the time from late 41 until the coup and count up the amount of time that the Soviets had military possession of parts of Iran in that period. we weren’t making stuff up out of thin air. there were Russian boots holding Iranian soil most of the time and there were post-WWII battles between Iranian troops and Russian troops leading Russian-sponsored insurgents.

            we weren’t delusional in seeing Russians looking to overrun Iran. They had a very long run at it.

            • bobschacht says:

              we weren’t delusional in seeing Russians looking to overrun Iran. They had a very long run at it.

              I think you’re right about that. Russia has wanted a southern port for about 400 years. It was part of the Great Game that lured the Brits… and then the Russians… into Afghanistan.

              Bob in AZ

            • captjjyossarian says:

              Yeah, the allies were all in Iran during WWII. Russians in the north, Brits and Americans in the South. But so what? They all left before the end of 1946. Sure the Russians didn’t want to leave but leave they did when Truman pushed on them. That pretty much proved that the Russians didn’t like their prospects in Iran. Not against the Americans anyway.

              Frankly, both the British and Russians were hugely unpopular in Iran at that point in history. Both had a 100 year+ track record of doing bad things to Iran/Persia. Iranian politicians, Mossadeq included, were reaching out to the Americans to keep the Brits and Russians from tearing thier country to bits.

              I’m sure that the Brits tried to say that Mossadeq was a commie but that’s just because they wanted thier damn oil. The primary enemies of the British Empire were nationalists. And that’s what Mossadeq was and Americans knew it.

              Ike supported the coup to save America’s alliance with the UK. But the driving force pushing for the coup was indeed the British. They wanted the oil.

              • macaquerman says:

                The Russian army formally left. The Russians didn’t leave. Many took off their uniforms and stayed behind.
                Check the history of the “autonomous republics” that the Russians set up in the northern Iranian provinces of Azerbaijan and Kurdistan after the Soviets accepted concessions in exchange for agreeing to agree to their previous agreement to withdraw and the areas were re-occupied by the Iranian government troops (more or less).

        • reddflagg says:

          The only problem with your theory is that the British-Iranian Oil Company PAID for the coup, reportedly around $7 billion US and funneled through the CIA to members of the Iranian military as bribes.

        • reddflagg says:

          This article ON THE CIA’S OWN WEBSITE (written by “a member of CIA’s History Staff”) completely refutes your argument that the overthrow of Mossadeq was about the Soviets and not about controlling Iran’s oil:


          Here are a good quotes:

          The target was not an oppressive Soviet puppet but a democratically elected government whose populist ideology and nationalist fervor threatened Western economic and geopolitical interests … British colonialism faced its last stand in 1951 when the Iranian parliament nationalized the sprawling Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC) after London refused to modify the firm’s exploitative concession. “[B]y a series of insensate actions,” the British replied with prideful stubbornness, “the Iranian Government is causing a great enterprise, the proper functioning of which is of immense benefit not only to the United Kingdom and Iran but to the whole free world, to grind to a stop.

          You will probably argue that the CIA itself doesn’t know what it is talking about, but I wrote this to correct the record, not to respond to a fool.

          • macaquerman says:

            Your link read to a book review, redd, and you didn’t read it well.

            The reviewer, a CIA historian, had this to say about US motivation.

            Eisenhower and his secretary of state, John Foster Dulles, were dedicated to rolling back communism

            from here…………………

            British colonialism faced its last stand in 1951 when the Iranian parliament nationalized the sprawling Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC) after London refused to modify the firm’s exploitative concession. “[B]y a series of insensate actions,” the British replied with prideful stubbornness, “the Iranian Government is causing a great enterprise, the proper functioning of which is of immense benefit not only to the United Kingdom and Iran but to the whole free world, to grind to a stop. Unless this is promptly checked, the whole of the free world will be much poorer and weaker, including the deluded Iranian people themselves.”2 Of that attitude, Dean Acheson, the secretary of state at the time, later wrote: “Never had so few lost so much so stupidly and so fast.”3 But the two sides were talking past each other. The Iranian prime minister, Mohammed Mossadeq, was “a visionary, a utopian, [and] a millenarian” who hated the British, writes Kinzer. “You do not know how crafty they are,” Mossadeq told an American envoy sent to broker the impasse. “You do not know how evil they are. You do not know how they sully everything they touch.”4

            The Truman administration resisted the efforts of some British arch-colonialists to use gunboat diplomacy, but elections in the United Kingdom and the United States in 1951 and 1952 tipped the scales decisively toward intervention. After the loss of India, Britain’s new prime minster, Winston Churchill, was committed to stopping his country’s empire from unraveling further. Eisenhower and his secretary of state, John Foster Dulles, were dedicated to rolling back communism and defending democratic governments threatened by Moscow’s machinations. In Iran’s case, with diplomacy having failed and a military incursion infeasible (the Korean War was underway), they decided to take care of “that madman Mossadeq”5 through a covert action under the supervision of the secretary of state’s brother, Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) Allen Dulles.6 (Oddly, considering the current scholarly consensus that Eisenhower was in masterful control of his administration, Kinzer depicts him as beguiled by a moralistic John Foster and a cynical Allen.) Directing the operation was the CIA’s charming and resourceful man in Tehran, Kermit Roosevelt, an OSS veteran, Arabist, chief of Middle East operations, and inheritor of some of his grandfather Theodore’s love of adventure.

            You don’t read carefully, redd..

            I wrote that US motivation was about the Soviets and said that British motivation was about the oil.

            That’s pretty much what the CIA historian……ON THE CIA’s OWN WEBSITE!!!……. wrote.

            Please fell free to not respond.

            • jdmckay0 says:

              I wrote that US motivation was about the Soviets and said that British motivation was about the oil.
              That’s pretty much what the CIA historian……ON THE CIA’s OWN WEBSITE!!!……. wrote.

              Actually, no.

              What he’s quoting there are excerpts, mostly from Pinzer’s book. To read your excerpt, one may gather CIA thought Mossadeq was “a madman”, which was certainly not the case.

              I read extensively of this episode about a yr after first big wave of FOIA docs were released, around 2k. It’s been a while, and I can’t quote precise data/sources. But I read everything… everything.

              The Soviet thing was CIA propaganda… period. And there was plenty of that. CIA bombed mosques, then publicized those events as Mossadegh initiated. The quotes on royalties payed by BP to Iran are false… never exceeded (from memory) around 12%, and that only in last few years of BP presence.

              As to Soviet “boots on the ground”, you present that as though it was continuity >> justification for “Soviet threat”. But there was no continuity, and plenty of other “boots on the ground” through that era: NAZIs in particular.

              Your reference to concerns over Tudah party and ties to Soviets… propoganda. They Tudah’s were entirely independent, were advocates of some socialist principles which was their ideological tie to Soviet Union. They were, however, openly hostile to much of Soviet police state (and other oppressive) tendencies. This was well covered in Wilbur’s book (CIA man on the spot in that affair), and later detailed released CIA docs.

              If you never read those docs, that’s the place to start. Very good archive in NYT’s review of those things, I can dig up link if you need it.

              Best book on the subject I read was: Eagle and The Lion by James A. Bill. For those wanting to brush up on this one, I’d start there.

              As to your mentioning having read kermit’s screed, I have no idea what you took from that: if you took it as accurate historical accounting, however, you took it wrong. From everything that came later, Kermit was revealed w/certainty as a propagandist and self seeker (he profited greatly from black market stuff he organized from CIA perch in Iran), and is viewed by historians w/which I was familiar as a rather cretinous creature, not a bastion of foreign policy excellence.

              Roosevelt was to that coup as Bush’s people were to “liberating Iraq”.

              • macaquerman says:

                my comment that you’ve posted is best read in the context of a reply to reddflaggg, jd.
                and not on its own.

                thanks for thoughts about the exaggeration of things and CIA propaganda and dirty deeds, they’re noted.
                I’ve read one or two books and a few things about this but I’ll try to get a look at Donald Wilbur’s book.

                perhaps it’ll modify my view.

                I took Roosevelt’s book to be insane propaganda that was horrifyingly self-satirical as it read as if it were a blithe travelogue about fun to be had abroad in the service of the Shah.
                I highly recommend reading it to anyone possessing a fondness forvery exotic cocktails.

                • jdmckay0 says:

                  perhaps it’ll modify my view.

                  If you read any of the ones I listed (IMO Bill’s is best… he deals w/Wilbur), rather than “modify” a view, I’d suggest you’ll be persuaded by facts to eject a lie and acknowledge a whole lot…

                  * that US committed huge crimes in that debacle
                  * that US has subjugated a free, democratic populace for purposes of controlling their oil. (I’d suggest to you there are others in this category BTW).
                  * that US is capable of, and has done, some really really bad stuff
                  * that US lies about both of above
                  * recognize characteristics when one of these acts is discussed or in process.

                  Among other things, those FOIA docs and CIA statements saying the Mossadegh affair should be a “blueprint” for future such actions. By my eye, Bush’s Iraq adventure followed that blueprint to a -t-.

                  I took Roosevelt’s book to be insane propaganda that was horrifyingly self-satirical as it read as if it were a blithe travelogue about fun to be had abroad in the service of the Shah.

                  Got it… an appropriate view IMO.

                  • macaquerman says:

                    our disagreement is about whether the US actions in the coup were primarily for oil rather than as part of the Cold War with the Russians.

                    I can’t recall any mention of a denial of crimes, lies or really bad stuff.
                    I’m of the opinion that humans indulge themselves in quite a bit of all of them.

                    send along any links to CIA docs that you regard as important.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      As bmaz says, your comments are incorrect. The slightest effort would demonstrate how well-documented the case is against the US and British governments of the time, and in whose interests they were working. It was not the Iranians’.

      Your blithe comment is akin to claiming that the many incursions of the US Marines in Latin America over the past 125 years were to help spread freedom and foster democracy, something only Karl Rove or Glenn Beck could claim with a straight face. Smedley Butler knew that to be false and misleading special pleading by corporations, whose local monopolies those incursions were meant to sustain. Bananas and coffee, timber and minerals don’t come at the profit levels American corporations demand without a few boots on the ground to trample on those who might claim those resources as their own.

      America has been an empire for over a hundred years, as brutal as the Brits and French, if not as long-lived. We still are; we’ve just left the Belgians, Germans, Russians, Spanish and Portuguese behind. The Monroe Doctrine may originally have been defensive; it became offensive in short order.

  10. alinaustex says:

    I saw dear Tony being frogged march out of the Oval office after his meeting with President Obama for his criminally negligent corporation’s economic terrorist attack on our way of life on the Gulf Coast then the alarm woke me up -ironically the radio was playing “Born on the Bayou “…

  11. fatster says:

    Video: Florida Senator spots 40 mile long plume of thick oil “that came to surface from the bottom of the Gulf”


    • bobschacht says:

      How the heck does he know where it came from, from a flyover? …unless “the bottom of the Gulf” is generic and all-inclusive (well, it didn’t come from outer space!)

      Pensacola would be getting part of the Deepwater Horizon oil plume. It’s been ID’d.

      The interesting thing would have been if Senator George LeMieux had actually identified the source of the large oil plume that stretches between the Deepwater Horizon well and the Yucatan, and had meant that the oil came out of the ocean floor without benefit of a well, then that would be news.

      Bob in AZ

  12. cheneywatchorg says:

    Old William D’Arcy…founder of AIOC…just another wealthy profiteer who was the Tony Hayward of his day….

    D’Arcy loved to live large and ran his money dry.
    Fortunately for him, so did the Shah at the time.
    Shah Mozzafar al-Din Shah Qajar loved to live large above his citizens. This lifestyle, like D’Arby, required Fuel. (sidenote: his nephew was Mohammed Mossadeq)
    If not for the unchecked greed of these people, our gulf might not be destroyed right now.

    D’Arcy almost lost out on his historical note. He almost didn’t strike oil in Masjed Soleiman, Iran. But alas, in 1908..the pact with fate was signed.

    The intricate history of Iran and APIOC, eventually BP, is undeniably ruled by the capitalistic interests of BP and the empire behind it. As one historian wrote, (paraphrased) “if not for the APIOC, Britain would not have won WWI”. If not for the fuel it provided, Britain could not have powered its military machine.

    In 1932, Reza Shah cancelled the OIL concession granted to D’Arcy that would have not have expired for another 30 years in 1961. The original agreement gave the wealthy of Iran 16% and Reza Shah wanted 21%. Britain went to the League of Nations to appeal but gave in. that was which was slated to expire in 1961. The concession granted Persia 16% of the net profits from APOC oil operations. The Shah wanted 21%.

    I would argue that Britain forced Iran to do its bidding so much that Iran eventually sought support in the Germans. By WWII, Germany was Iran’s largest foreign trading partner. British authority had been overused.

    Looking at the invasion of Iran (Operation Countenance) during WWII by Russia and Britain in Aug 1941, we can see that the only real intersection again is oil and the central player there…APIOC. Reza Shah was forced to abdicate on September 16, 1941. Soviets and Brits wanted a more favorable player, Shah Reza Pahlavi:

    “Would His Highness kindly abdicate in favour of his son, the heir to the throne? We have a high opinion of him and will ensure his position. But His Highness should not think there is any other solution”

    In the early 50s, the Iranian parliament voted to nationalize the oil industry and we can see what that led to; Operation Ajax-The overthrow by orchestrated by the CIA. What we may have ignored in this is how intrinsic APIOC was to the British economy at that time. We easily remember the Mossadeq end, but what about the British economy being so dependent upon foreign oil for its survival?

    Here we are 50 years later and Britain hasn’t learned a damn thing. Now we have to listen to our former LandLords tell us…”now now there..enough of that…” as if we’re children. TO hell with them. The American people need to take note of the British example of being employed by a company like BP. When your pension is tied into a company who gains its wealth by theft, warring, ecological devastation and ignoring safety guidelines, you eliminate the weight of your complaints when those who are at the effect of their actions fight back.

    Liquidate BP, Nationalize the process, I don’t care..but learn damnit.

    Thanks emptywheel, bmaz and others.

  13. fatster says:

    Engineers say Interior changed oil report after they signed

    ‘The version they’d signed said Salazar recommended a six-month moratorium on permits for new exploratory wells in water deeper than 1,000 feet.

    “The final version recommended a six-month moratorium on “new wells being drilled using floating rigs.” That included rigs in water deeper than 500 feet and covered more of them, Allen said.”


  14. captjjyossarian says:

    Yeah, I read about the history of BP/Anglo-Iranian Oil Corp’s activities in Iran. They cooked the books and refused to let the Iranian government audit the books. Iranians ended up getting pennies on the dollar at a time when US oil companies were offering 50-50 profit sharing on international contracts.

    And thier treatment of Iranian workers…. dogs were treated better. They were paid 50 cents a day and lived in a shanty town who’s name translates to “paper city”(paper was the construction material). In the winter they were moved into big halls built by the company which housed 3000-4000 to a room. Each family was allocated the space taken up by a single blanket. No electic, no water. No vacations, no sick leave and no disability compensation.

    But of course, BP will treat American’s better than that if given a chance! Meh… not likely.

  15. Margaret says:

    I find it hard to believe that the British suddenly developed such thin skins. Sounds like their conservatives have been taking lessons from our conservatives.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      I don’t think they have. This is a tradmed meme that blows out of proportion their concerns. Mr. Obama has been inept in anticipating that obvious response by failing to make common cause with those concerned about dangerous, risky corporate behavior. His “centrism” probably makes that impossible for him to do.

  16. TalkingStick says:

    I am not informed enough to get into a discussion of the Iran regime change.

    British Petroleum and its antecedents have been a projection of British Imperial power in the Middle East almost since oil was discovered. The current nations of the Middle East and their boundaries are creations of Brit intrusions and manipulations, largely to the advantage of British Petroleum before the Cold War and Red paranoia set in.

    Just a guess but I suspect part of the reaction of the Brits now is a result of the souring opinion of the US for the past few years and as well nostalgia for the times of Empire when British Petroleum and BOAC were indistinguishable from the government and the people.

  17. myshadow says:

    Well things have just changed. Of course BP waits till Saturday evening to confirm what has been buzzing all week. The thing that Senator Nelson was Cassandra calling all week.
    Their little blow back trick upset the strata on the ocean floor.

    “Sources at two companies involved with the well said that BP also discovered new damage inside the well below the seafloor and that, as a result, some of the drilling mud that was successfully forced into the well was going off to the side into rock formations.

    “We discovered things that were broken in the sub-surface,” said a BP official who spoke on the condition of anonymity. He said that mud was making it “out to the side, into the formation.”


    There is a lot of pertinant video clips here…
    This is more than plugging a leak there are fissures in several places on the sea floor exuding oil.
    We are so fucked.

    • bmaz says:

      Hmmmm, what a shock. I wonder if all those Oil Drum experts are gonna take back all those things they said about me being an uniformed idiot or however they phrased it.

      • Hmmm says:

        &^%#&^%# and damn. Not, as you say, that we didn’t already know — because we possess reason — that this was the case.

        So… Acknowledgement of plumes (which can no longer be denied as to source) follows in 3… 2… 1…?

            • fatster says:

              Well, shoot! I will try again in just a sec, but the “long way ’round” is to go to the main link, scroll down to “Latest News” and that “Situation Report 45” is now fifth down from the top (“Situation Report 46” has now been posted, too).

              So, here’s the main link again.

              And here’s the address I get for “Situation Report 45”, but if it doesn’t work again, please just use the main link and scroll down.

              Do note that in both “Situation Reports” they are discussing two plumes.

                • fatster says:

                  Good. If you haven’t already seen it, David Dayen has a neat post up about how many oil spills (small to our monster) were in the news just over this past week. He also brings up the Ocean Saratoga one in the Gulf.

                  • bobschacht says:

                    Thanks! The Ocean Saratoga leak is another big one that needs more/better press coverage. Its the one I have been referring to as between the DWH oil volcano and the Yucatan. And they need to be held just as responsible as BP. In fact, they’re not that different. The biggest difference is that the Ocean Saratoga did not go down in a giant fireball. There has been some press coverage, but you have to go looking for it. I’m glad to have a name for it now.

                    Bob in AZ

        • fatster says:

          Worse than plumes? Have they known, or at least suspected, this all along? That would explain some of the weird behavior.

          “The evidence is growing stronger and stronger that there is substantial damage beneath the sea floor. Indeed, it appears that BP officials themselves have admitted to such damage. This has enormous impacts on both the amount of oil leaking into the Gulf, and the prospects for quickly stopping the leak this summer.”


            • bmaz says:

              I saw that yesterday. It is the same article somebody linked last night, just in a different place. Really nothing new; in fact some of it is fairly old and is part of what Bill Nelson was relying on. I started to write it up on Friday; guess I better go ahead and finish it. I have a few other things too to add too.

              • fatster says:

                Oh, sorry. Well, here’s another that I just came across. And I do think this is enough for today. Problem is, when I think of how weary I’m getting of all this, I have to face it that we have no idea when this nightmare will end. Nor how. Hope at least some of the stuff I stumble across is useful to you.

                Looking forward to your article.

                BP ‘Mechanical Difficulties’ Led To Usage Of Subsea Dispersants Twice The EPA Limit


                • bmaz says:

                  No reason to be sorry, that guy has posted his same article in a boatload of different places. I have had many different people send it to me.

                  • qweryous says:

                    Agree to that observation and @75.

                    Lack of actual statements on the record by BP concerning this and related issues indicates an opportunity for Hayward to fix this lack of clarity.

                    Perhaps on Tuesday with Congressman Markey?

        • bobschacht says:

          What we need is a source for the big plume between Deepwater Horizon and the Yucatan. It was ID’d as NOT coming from DWH. If so, where the heck did it come from?

          Bob in AZ

    • bobschacht says:

      I’m not so worried if some drilling mud got forced out into the ocean floor– unless it opens cracks that provides new vents for the oil to leak out. I guess I need to go over to theoildrum and read some more.

      Bob in AZ

  18. fatster says:

    BP bailout proposal coming soon

    “Get ready for the BP bailout debate. As the most hated company in America led by the most despised CEO in business continues its systematic deceptions about the magnitude of the catastrophe, its systematic secrecy and threats of reprisal against employees who speak the truth in public and its systematic blockade against reporters seeking the basic facts, get ready for the mother of all political debates.”


  19. sagesse says:

    Ken Salazar talking tough can’t really have spooked anyone – seriously. Boot on Neck Salazar? Sounds like it was in part done to improve his image a hair.

  20. alank says:

    And, oh how they loathe Iran’s autonomy. How they miss the screaming back in the good old days.

    So what sort of complications will this international crisis introduce into the Israeli-Anglo plan to end this autonomy?

  21. macaquerman says:

    First of all, Mossadegh was not an “old man.”

    seventy years or so (b.1882) is old enough.

    Alleged Mossadegh ties to Soviets was part of CIA disinformation campaign, and something used to this day by right wingers to head off any thought of taking a 2nd look of that sorry affair

    not part of what I stated, anyway but you’re welcome to it.

    IActually, that’s false. FOIA CIA docs are clear about that: we did it largely at behest of US oil interests, long salivating to get BP type piece of ME oil pie.

    we had all we needed in Arabia.
    but if you’ve got links of interest, I’m interested, even if everybody else here is not.

    Loved Roosevelt’s book. Read it twice just to clear up my idea that it might have been ghosted by Hunter Thompson. It was nearly enough to produce acid flashbacks.

  22. posercom says:

    It is very sad that Liberal democrats pulled a Mohammed Mozedec (the democratically elected leader of Iran during the British -Petrolium coop to oust him for his efforts to nationalize Irans oil industry) on Sarah Palin. This is what happens to leaders who are brave enough to take on big oil as Sarah Palin most definitly did in Alaska. She purged the AOGCC-(Alaska Oil and Gas Conservasion Commission,on which she served) of it’s corupt officials who served their special interests and Big Oil instead of doing their job. She had to take on the most powerful men in her own party to do so. She also choose to resign when she faced a gag order after she exposed the coruption because she wanted to speak out. Sarah Palin taxed the natural gas companies 50% more than 6 times the average among states that host Natural gas extraxtion comanpies. My Governor Ed Rendel perfers the poor mans tax-Casinos to raise state revenues and taxes the Nat. GAs industry zero taxes. God forgive me for ever having been a liberal democrat. When you take on corupt corporate interests, you wide up being rail raosded like Sarah Palin. But if you vote for the Bush Cheney energy bill like then Senator Obama the left will allow you to blame Bush without demanding that you also blame yourself.
    Incidentially, John McCain and Hillary Clinton both voted against the Bush Cheney energy bill. Antoher fun fact for liberals-Georfe Soros has recently bought a 15% stake in Petrolio Brazileiro which will be drilling of the coast of Brazil. Obama has secure guarentied loans to Brazil to support Soro’s pet project. Global Glutenous piggies (Al Gore, George Soros, Queen Beatrice, Franklin Reigns, and Barak Obama) who just want all the worlds natural resourses under their own control. What the hell has become of my former party?

    • qweryous says:

      “Mohammed Mozedec”,”Sarah Palin” and “coop” all in one sentence.

      Still don’t believe it is possible- but there it is.

      Thought she resigned after serving approximately half of her first term as governor.

      Might be more sure what happened, but had some trouble following that speech.

      • posercom says:

        Sorry if you could not follw my speeach, but don’t believ me. Check Palins record as a chairperson on the AOGCC. She had Governor Murkowski’s pal Randy Ruedrich, a former general manager of Doyon Drilling and for Oil Company Arco, exposed for his conflict of interest. Randy Ruedrich was on the AOGCC along with Sarah Palin and Dan Seamount. Palin held the position of representative from the public sector. Palin new she was putting her political career in jeopardy taking on the most powerful men in her party. She was respected by democrats in Alaska for her courageous defense of the people of Alaska and their enviroment and natural resourses. John McCain was also very respected by democrats, that was until the false messiah Barak Obama came on the seen.
        Se the thing is, if you go from being a State Senator in IL 13th district to being the president of the US, it’s because you were willing to jump into ned with shady characters like Tony Rezko and the rest of the Chicago political fixers. If you really look out for the people you face the kind of persuqusion that Sarah Palin has faced. But no worries she can take it. She has more courage in her little finger than al the Chicago politicians has in their spineless bodies.

      • posercom says:

        Sarah Palin did resign after half her term as governor, becasue she was bobarded with 16 bogus ethics charges filed against her. These law suits cost her $500,000 personally and also cost the state the dearly. She was unable to act effectively while having to deal with all these trumped up legal filings. And she did also resign from the AOGCC as I explained in another post. It’s unfortunate that Palin did not have a cronie like Obama’s AG Eric Holder as her state AG. Obama gets away with murder and Palin is persecuted for looking out for the people of her state. Does this really surprise you?

  23. posercom says:

    More facts about Obama administration and Big Oil. The archetect of BP’s Green Advertising campaign which was dominating the airwaves befor the disaster is married to Rep. DeLauro (D). They allowed Rohm Emanuel to live in their DC apartment for five years without paying rent. BP also gave very sizeable study grants to Obama’s Energy secretary. It is to bad the liberal media still bows at the alter of Obama. These facts get no attention. nor does the fact that Obama voted for the Bush Cheney energy bill which Hillary Clinton and John McCain voted against.

    • bmaz says:

      Are you accusing us of being “liberal media”, other people, or just generally blowing straw smoke out your rear? Why not just come and relate and discuss facts instead of bandying about cute crap? Give it a try.

      • posercom says:

        As always personal attacks from the left when they cannot deal with the facts. My comments were full of facts about Palins record in Alaska and the Obama’s vote for the Bush -Cheney energy bill and George Soros’ new investment in off shore drill with Petrolio Brazileiro. Just keep on running from the facts until you are exausted. The facts won’t let you rest until you face them and accept them.

  24. fatster says:

    Interesting article on Obama’s missteps in confronting the Gulf catastrophe, echoing shortcomings detected in other areas. A pattern emerges.

    How Obama decided to expand offshore oil drilling

    “-Obama thought that funneling information through White House “czars” such as energy and environment adviser Carol Browner would get him all the data he needed.
    “-He failed to drill into the government bureaucracy to test that information.
    “-He never talked to the Coast Guard about its 2002 oil-spill drill in the Gulf
    “-He didn’t reach out to outside experts”


  25. fatster says:

    Obama wants BP to set up escrow account for claims

    “The White House wants an independent, third party to administer the escrow account and compensate those with “legitimate” claims for damages, he [David Axelrod] said.” [Emph. added]


  26. fatster says:

    This is great. However, who is monitoring the sensors to ensure they have been rigorously tested, are being installed and run correctly?

  27. fatster says:


    BP As Schrodinger’s Cat: Simmons Upgrades Firm To Buy, Seeing It As Both Bankrupt And With $52 Stock Price At Same Time


  28. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Regarding @69, “Communism” was a convenient umbrella foe that hid many evils for the nascent CIA. It hid other objectives in Latin America, SE Asia, Greece, ad nauseum. One thing it hid was American imperial ambitions.

    The US was not out to rid the world of British imperialism in order to free the peaceful nationalist ambitions of post-colonial governments in Africa, Latin America, South Asia and the Middle East. The US wanted a piece of the action. The Brits were growing weaker by the year 1945-60, and were ripe for plucking. Anti-Soviet motivations were real, but coincided with strong economic objectives.

    Soviet ambitions in Iran were a potential threat to US interests. So was the continuing dominance of British government and corporate interests. The US was intent on frustrating one and toppling the other, and not just in Iran. Your argument that the US was interested only in stopping the Soviets is as balanced as the official CIA historian’s.

    • macaquerman says:

      Soviet ambitions in Iran were a potential threat to US interests. So was the continuing dominance of British government and corporate interests. The US was intent on frustrating one and toppling the other, and not just in Iran. Your argument that the US was interested only in stopping the Soviets is as balanced as the official CIA historian’s.

      My argument was that the US was intent on frustrating the Soviets, the Brits to hang on to BP.
      It was made in refutation to the assertion that the US acted in Iran “for that company shitting up our Gulf”.

      If you wish to add the assertion that the US had an additional motivation and was working “against that company” and the Brits, feel free. I’ll cling to saying that frustrating Russian expansionism far outstripped other considerations.

  29. macaquerman says:

    I’m fairly right wing. Matter of fact, I thought that they should have given Admiral Donitz a chance to pull things together instead of just dumping on him the way that they did.
    But I’m not so sure that you’ve really got a firm grasp on this whole Sarah Palin persecution thing…. (don’t believe everything that you read, she’s making out pretty good)

  30. jdmckay0 says:

    I can’t recall any mention of a denial of crimes, lies or really bad stuff.

    No US leader has ever acknowledged this episode. 99% of Americans know nothing of it, and accuse you of hating America if you suggest it. All they know is Iran is a bunch of bad Islamic guys who hate Israel. Every Iranian knows of it, however. And many had fathers/brothers etc. imprisoned and/or disappeared by Shah’s secret police for no reason other than their support of Mossadegh and protestions of his coup >>> imprisonment.

    Google Amazon for books on this subject, select a few writen since around ’03: flooded w/Likudniks, making the entirely non-factual (revisionist history) case that Iran/Mossadegh was bad guy in that affair. Kind’a interesting to me… Likudniks desperate to wipe out Iran’s nuke program (for 2nd time), so just why all of a sudden all these guys writing disinformation books on Iranian history?

    send along any links to CIA docs that you regard as important.

    NYT’s archive, based on release of those things, is here.

    Links to NSA archive here, including detailed docs from Wilbur. Cryptome.org has complete archive of those docs, not sure where (they move ’em around), but shouldn’t be hard to find. The NYT archive, however, covers better part of Cryptome stuff, so I’d start there.

Comments are closed.