Thursday, March 26, 2009

Iran History Revisited: Part 4

(See parts 1-3 below)

In January 2007, the editor-in-chief of the Kuwaiti-based Arab Times, Ahmed Al-Jarallah, reported that “A reliable source said President Bush… held a meeting with Vice President Dick Cheney, Defense Secretary Robert Gates…and other assistants in the White House where they discussed the plan to attack Iran in minute detail.” Yet in 2009 President Bush’s Defense Secretary, Robert Gates, is still the U.S. Secretary of Defense.

And as Eric Margolis observed in the February 16, 2009 issue of the Khaleeq Times:

“The CIA… funds at least one extremist Pakistani Sunni group that launches raids into Iran, attacking government posts, soldiers and civilians. Further covert American aid goes to armed separatist groups among Iran’s Arab and Azeri minorities…The US Congress has repeatedly voted hundreds of millions for such covert operations.

“The US has also waged a…financial and economic war against…Iran…

“Israeli elections produced a sharp move to the right, increasing chances Israel may make good on threats to attack Iran…”

Yet most U.S. high school social studies departments, ironically, still don’t require their students to study much 20th-century Iranian history.

On July 31, 1920 a National Committee for the Liberation of Persia was set up by the non-communist Jangali leaders and their Persian Communist Party allies, and in mid-August 1920 the revolutionary army of the National Committee for the Liberation of Persia marched on Tehran. The UK imperialist-backed Iranian central government’s army, however, was able to defeat this revolutionary army.

On February 26, 1921, the Soviet government then signed a friendship treaty with the pro-British Iranian central government to withdraw all Soviet troops from northeast Iran by September 21, 1921. Once the Soviet troops were gone, Reza Khan Pahlavi’s Iranian central government then was able to more easily decrease the Persian Communist Party’s political influence in Iran by the end of 1921.

At the end of 1921, however, there were still 10 labor unions or guilds in Iran, with 10,000 members, that represented bakers, printers, telegraph workers, tailors, street cleaners or government employees. The newspaper that expressed the political goals of these Iranian unions, Haqiqat (‘Truth’) promoted the following four demands during the early 1920s:

1. lift martial law in Iran;
2. amnesty for all Iranian political prisoners;
3. confiscate and distribute the lands of those who had abused Iranian peasants’ rights; and
4. distribute Iranian state land among Iranian peasants.

By 1922, worker membership in Iranian trade unions had increased to 15,000, with 12,000 of the unionized Iranian workers living in Tehran. Around 1,000 Iranians were also still members of the Persian Communist Party in 1922. But by 1924 the number of Persian Communist Party members had dropped to 600.

And after Reza Khan--backed by the Iranian landlords, the Iranian Army and the Anglo-Persian Oil Company which ruled southern Iran—became the Iranian monarch in 1925, he then both suppressed the Iranian trade unions and began to outlaw the Persian Communist Party. (end of part 4)

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