788.00/8–1653: Telegram

No. 344
The Chargé in Iran (Mattison) to the Department of State1


342. Late morning August 16, correspondents Donald Schwind, Associated Press, and Kenneth Love, New York Times, went to hills north of Tehran at request son of General Zahedi for conference. Zahedi not present, but son showed signed decree from Shah and gave photostats of it to newsmen.

Decree, signed by Shah, dated Thursday, August 13, 1953, said:

“View of fact situation of nation necessitates appointment of an informed and experienced man who can grasp affairs of country readily, I therefore, with knowledge I have of your ability and [Page 746] merit, appoint you with this letter Prime Minister. We give into your hands duty to improve affairs of the nation and remove present crisis and raise living standard of people.”

Zahedi’s son said father naturally in hiding; that coup not intended; that Colonel Nasari went to Prime Minister’s home this morning with soldiers to present this decree to Mosadeq and was arrested by guards.

Translator US Embassy, well acquainted with Shah’s signature because previous employment, saw photostat and declared belief Shah’s signature genuine.

  1. Repeated to London and Beirut for Ambassador Henderson.