Presentation on theme: "The Cold War- Document Workshop The Gilder Lehrman Institute Malcolm Byrne February 15, 2010."— Presentation transcript:
The Cold War- Document Workshop The Gilder Lehrman Institute Malcolm Byrne February 15, 2010
“Encourage Western allies and friends to help Iran meet its import requirements so as to reduce the attractiveness of Soviet assistance and trade offers, while demonstrating the value of correct relations with the West. This includes provision of selected military equipment as determined on a case-by- case basis.” (p. 5)
Senior officials shoot the idea down: “This is almost too absurd to comment on … It’s like asking Quadaffi to Washington for a cozy chat.” Caspar Weinberger
Weinberger’s notes of December 7, 1985, White House meeting: “I argued strongly that we have an embargo that makes arms sales to Iran illegal + President couldn't violate it + that ‘washing’ transaction thru Israel wouldn't make it legal. Shultz, Don Regan agreed. “President sd. he could answer charges of illegality but he couldn't answer charge that ‘big strong President Reagan passed up a chance to free hostages’.”
Why Should We Care about Iran & Iraq during the Cold War? Helps explain current predicament in the Gulf: o How did we get involved in the first place? o What are our interests there? o Why do “they” “hate” us? o What do we do now?
Street politics was a powerful weapon in Iran in the early 1950s (and still is).
A foreign policy moment that would later haunt President Carter: the toast to the Shah on Dec. 31, 1977 -- “Iran, because of the great leadership of the Shah, is an island of stability in one of the more troubled areas of the world.” One year and two weeks later, the Shah fled Iran for a second time, this time permanently.
Carter’s decision to admit the Shah to the U.S. for medical treatment precipitated the hostage crisis.
Senior diplomat Bruce Laingen, the author of this July 1979 cable, warned against admitting the Shah to the U.S. Two weeks after the White House went ahead anyway (in Oct.), Laingen became a hostage.