128. Draft Paper Prepared in the Department of Defense1



Paragraph 2 a.

In the first sentence strike the clause “primarily to the Shah as the only present source of continuity of leadership”.

Paragraph 2 b.

Strike the present paragraph and substitute the following:

“Take the necessary measures to help Iran to start up her oil industry and to secure markets for her oil under arrangements which provide for reasonable compensation to the British for the loss of their oil properties. Such measures should include substantial, immediate, economic assistance to Iran in the form of a loan secured by oil or through the purchase of oil, on condition that the Iranian Government provide satisfactory assurances that the amount of compensation to be paid to the British for the properties which were nationalized would be settled by international arbitration.”

Paragraph 4

Strike this paragraph and substitute the following:

“In the light of the importance of Middle Eastern oil, the present dangerous situation in Iran, the failure of British policy and lack of British capabilities in Iran, increasing United States influence in the [Page 364] Middle East and increasing United States strength, the United States should take action to prevent Iran from falling to communism, even if this involves acting independently of the United Kingdom and the risk of damaging our close relations with the United Kingdom. The United States should be prepared, if necessary, to accept primary responsibility for Iran, and for taking the initiative in the military support of Iran in the event of communist aggression or attempted subversion.”

Paragraphs 5 and 5–a.

These paragraphs should be revised as follows:

“5. The United States should be prepared, wherever possible in conjunction with the United Kingdom and other allies, to counter possible communist subversion in Iran, and in event of either attempted or actual communist seizure of power in one or more of the provinces, or in Teheran, to take, at the request of the legal Iranian Government, political, economic, and, if necessary, military action, including the dispatch of United States forces, to prevent such seizure. Plans and preparations should include:

a. Correlation of plans, where appropriate, with the United Kingdom and other allies.”

Paragraph 7–e

Strike this paragraph and substitute the following:

e. Provide such military matériel and deploy such forces to the general area as can appropriately be made available without jeopardizing the security of the United States or areas of greater strategic importance to the United States in the light of the recommendations of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the time.”

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 273, Records of the National Security Council, Policy Papers, Box 213, NSC 136—US Pol re Iran. Top Secret; Security Information; For NSC Staff Consideration Only. Lay circulated the paper with suggested revisions of NSC 107/2 to the NSC Senior Staff on October 1 and stated that “the Senior Defense Member recommended that in view of recent events in Iran the Senior Staff undertake an immediate review of the subject report and as a matter of urgency prepare appropriate amendments thereto for consideration by the National Security Council.” (Ibid.) NSC 107/2 is Document 35.