CIA declassifies more of "Zendebad, Shah!" – internal study of 1953 Iran coup

12 February 2018 — National Security Archive

National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No.618

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Washington, D.C., February 12, 2018 – A partially-declassified CIA history of the 1953 coup in Iran, released in late 2017, includes an-depth critique of how the agency approached the operation, highlighting the effects of bureaucracy and politics on the conduct of U.S. clandestine activities. The CIA report, posted today by the George Washington University-based National Security Archive, also reveals details about the hatching of the covert plot as well as its execution.

Portions of the history, “Zendebad, Shah!”, have been made public twice before – in 2000 and 2011 – but those versions were identical and provided only the unclassified passages of the roughly 139-page document, withholding the rest on secrecy grounds. Last year, in response to the most recent Mandatory Declassification Review request by the National Security Archive, the CIA conducted another re-review, this time producing considerably more text, although still holding back a substantial amount. 

Today’s posting includes side-by-side examples to illustrate some of the differences in releases over the years.

Check out today’s posting at the National Security Archive

 

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THE NATIONAL SECURITY ARCHIVE is an independent non-governmental research institute and library located at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. The Archive collects and publishes declassified documents acquired through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). A tax-exempt public charity, the Archive receives no U.S. government funding; its budget is supported by publication royalties and donations from foundations and individuals.

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