Beginning on August 15th, 1953, the United States and the United Kingdom were underway with a plan to overthrow the Iranian Prime Minister. Back in 1951, Mohammed Mossadegh was elected by members of the Iranian parliament in order to pursue the dreams of the people of independence from the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC) and democracy, but taking away most of the Shah's powers in the process. By nationalizing the company and claiming back the territory on the Persian Gulf, the British were outraged and decided to launch numerous campaigns against him in order to claim back was rightfully theirs. If Dwight Eisenhower hadn't been elected to office, chances are the coup would not have taken place. The United States was very anti-communist during this post World War II (Cold War) era, and with the Soviet Union bordering the north of Iran, the last thing he U.S. needed was Iran and the Soviet Union teaming up together against our ally, the United Kingdom. The coup ended a few days later on August 19th, ending Mossadegh's government, but later it affected American foreign policy for many years to come. .
The Iranian government and people had been highly discontent over the years with the AOIC, which was the leading cause for many of the events that followed. Kinzer makes a point that the British basically bribed the Shah in 1931 into signing a deal which pretty much gave away Iran's oil to the AOIC, now known as British Petroleum. When Iran nationalized their oil, the British decided to take them to the world court in Belgium, but ultimately ended up losing the case. Not long after, the British tried to establish a coup, which resulted as unsuccessful.1 Iran kicked the British out of Iran and the United Kingdom proceeded to establish an embargo against Iran.2 Not just that, tensions were high because not only was Iran pro-Western, but pro-Soviet as well. In the United States, the Red Scare was prominent and enlisted fear in the population.