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370. Information Report Prepared in the Central Intelligence Agency1

CS–40723

SUBJECT

  • Details of Opposition to Zahedi Government

REFERENCES

  • CS–403542

SOURCE

  • [2 lines not declassified]

The following is a summary of events which reflect the thinking and agitation of various segments of the political arena in Iran concerning opposition to the Government of Prime Minister Zahedi:

1. On 4 June 1954, Senator Manuchehr Eqbal stated that the Government had received an eleventh hour reprieve through:

a. the accidental death of General Mohammed Hoseyn Jahanbani3 on 30 April 1954, which precluded the exposure of a major scandal concerning government corruption, in which Jahanbani was involved, and

b. the Shah’s appeal, transmitted by Minister of Court Hoseyn Ala, for strong Majlis support of the Government in the interest of an oil settlement.

2. On 5 June, Military Governor Timur Bakhtiar stated that he was not sure that the Government would last through the oil negotiations, despite the Shah’s support.

3. On 8 June, Manuchehr Eqbal approached Princess Ashraf for her support of a movement to replace Prime Minister Zahedi with Minister of Court Hoseyn Ala, to be followed by himself (Eqbal). Princess Ashraf refused on the basis that Ala was too weak.

4. General Hasan Arfa stated on 7 June that Prime Minister Zahedi must go and that, if a non-military figure is desired to replace Zahedi, it should be Hoseyn Ala; if it is to be a military figure, he, Arfa, should be selected. Arfa feels sure of United States and British support and is confident that their preference is for a military figure.

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5. On 9 June General Hasan Akhavi was still in Tehran on two months’ leave.4

  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, DDI Files, Job 80–00810A, Box 43, Folder 112, CS Information Reports 40720–40729. Secret.
  2. CS–40354, June 17, reported that General Batmangelich was agitating strongly for the replacement of Prime Minister Zahedi. The report also stated that Zahedi was aware of Batmangelich’s activities. (Ibid., Folder 75, CS Information Reports 40350–40359)
  3. Washington Comment: Jahanbani, Minister without Portfolio, died as a result of an automobile accident near Hamadan, Iran. [Footnote is in the original.]
  4. Field Comment: If it is true that General Arfa’s arch stooge, General Akhavi, is slated for Chief of Staff, he (Akhavi) is probably awaiting political developments. [Footnote is in the original.]