Just The Facts

Made in the USA: Iran’s Grievances

From Tehran’s perspective, why is it so hard to have better relations with the US?

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  • Iran has several major longstanding grievances against the United States, which make it hard to cooperate.
  • Official Iran hasn't forgotten the US-backed 1953 coup or US support for the Shah and Saddam Hussein.

Iran’s list of official grievances against the United States include:

1. The U.S.-backed coup against democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadeq in 1953;

2. The oppression by the Shah, a strong ally to the United States in the Middle East until the 1979 Revolution;

3. The alleged basing of American spy operations in Iran out of the U.S. embassy in Tehran (prior to its closure due to the hostage crisis);

4. Washington’s support for Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein during the brutal Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s;

5. The 1987 downing of an Iranian civilian airliner over the Persian Gulf;

6. Of late, sanctions that have severely squeezed Iran’s economy.

Adapted from Not All Iranians Want a Nuclear Deal by Lionel Barber (Financial Times)



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