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178. Information Report Prepared in the Central Intelligence Agency1

CS–5029a

SUBJECT

  • Attitude of Shah Concerning His Present Position

SOURCE

  • A source with close contacts with the Shah (F). Appraisal of Content: 3

1. The Shah told source on 11 March 1953 that his duty to his people was making him a virtual prisoner by frustrating his desire to go abroad and live “like a human being” and that he did not know how much longer he could carry on.2

2. The Shah stated that all his efforts to fight Communism were thwarted by Prime Minister Mossadeq, and that these were used against him (the Shah) and his family as “evidence” that they were participating in anti-Government intrigues.

3. The Shah denied that he “knew anything” about the tribal disturbance set off in February 1953 by Abul Ghasem Bakhtiar3 and blamed, by Mossadeq supporters, on anti-Government individuals who allegedly were influencing the Shah.

  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, DDI Files, Job 80–00810A, Box 7, Folder 7, CS Information Reports 5020–5029. Secret; Security Information; Control—U.S. Officials Only.
  2. Field Comment. According to a source with excellent contacts with the Bakhtiari chieftains, the Shah’s abdication would result in a “tribal dog fight” which would so weaken and disperse security forces that it probably would be an easy matter for the Tudeh Party to take over the Government. [Footnote is in the original.]
  3. Field Comment. According to same source as Comment 1 above, unless Abul Ghasem were captured and his followers dispersed before the mountain passes thawed (probably in late March), minor tribes adjacent to the Bakhtiar country would flock to their support, thus precipitating a major revolt. [Footnote is in the original.]