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213. Monthly Report Prepared in the Directorate of Plans, Central Intelligence Agency1

IRAN

May 1953

A. General Developments

1. May was marked by relatively minor parliamentary skirmishes between supporters and opponents of Mossadeq. The government’s base of support in the Majlis is narrowing, but the opposition still lacks the unity of leadership and design to challenge Mossadeq’s authority effectively. While the Tudeh’s popular strength remains about the same, its relative political position has grown relatively stronger as a result of continuing penetration of government agencies and the disruptive effects of Mossadeq’s struggle with the opposition.2

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2. There has been considerable speculation over the reasons for Secretary Dulles’ failure to visit Iran on his recent Middle Eastern tour and for Ambassador Henderson’s return to the U.S. Opposition attempts to describe these developments as manifestations of U.S. dissatisfaction with Mossadeq are being vitiated by reports of a probable increase of Point IV aid in the near future.

3. [1 paragraph (3 lines) not declassified]

B. Station Synopsis

[3 paragraphs (12 lines) not declassified]

C. Operational Summary

Political and Psychological Warfare

[1 paragraph (15 lines) not declassified]

Paramilitary Operations

[1 paragraph (3 lines) not declassified]

John H. Waller Chief, NE–4 (Iran)
  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, DDO–IMS Files, Job 81–01061R, Box 1, Folder 5, Monthly Report—May 1953—Country Summaries and Analyses. Top Secret.
  2. In commenting on the effectiveness of the CIA’s anti-Tudeh propaganda program, the May 1953 Monthly Project Status Report on [text not declassified] states that “the project’s effectiveness can be seen in the growing government interest and Tudeh opposition to certain items distributed by the [text not declassified] net. The vehement Tudeh protest and subsequent government crackdown is indicative of the effectiveness of the black attack on Borujerdi. An excellent Psychological Warfare success resulted from the discovery and publication of the unissued and heretofore secret government order absolving Tudehites from complicity in the attempted assassination of the Shah. Finally, in the field of political activism, groups under [text not declassified] sponsorship played an important part in reducing Tudeh May Day activities to an unimpressive level. (Ibid., DDO Files, Job 59–00133, Box 5, Folder 13)