|Our man in Tehran until 1979|
We don't hear anyone demanding what might help solidify an accord with the Iranian side: an apology from the U.S. for overthrowing Iran's democratically elected government in 1953 and sustaining our chosen dictator, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, in power for more than a quarter of a century. SAVAK, the Shah's security police, was organized with CIA assistance; it specialized in ruthless torture and assassination of any and all opponents of royal rule. No wonder Iranians came to hate and fear us.
The Iranian theocracy that replaced the Shah is pretty awful, but we don't have clean hands here. Our refusal to recognize our faults in this relationship will impede agreements as long as we persist in our convenient historical amnesia.