Saturday, January 29, 2011

"particularly clumsy CIA plot"

"In cautioning that events in Tunisia might not be replicated, Mr. Kaplan writes that upheavals in the Middle East have often resulted in authoritarian regimes seizing power. What goes unmentioned is any United States role.  Mr. Kaplan cites the 1979 revolt against the Iranian shah’s “tyranny,” which resulted in a worse regime. He doesn’t mention the 1953 overthrow of Iran’s freely elected prime minister, Mohammed Mossadegh, by a coup the C.I.A. organized to secure the throne for the shah.  Mr. Kaplan writes that “perhaps hundreds of thousands ... died in sectarian and ethnic violence” in Iraq after Saddam Hussein’s overthrow. He doesn’t mention the C.I.A.’s skewed W.M.D. estimates that contributed to a war of choice, and President Bush’s lack of postwar planning with its predictable results.
Mr. Kaplan refers to military regimes that followed sectarian breakdowns in Syria without mentioning the C.I.A.’s part in that country’s destabilization. As an example, the C.I.A.’s 1958 Operation Wappen was a covert operation to overthrow the Syrian government in what my father, a United States ambassador to Syria, called “a particularly clumsy C.I.A. plot.”
Felicity O. Yost
New York, Jan. 23, 2011"