It is easy to forget that lop-sided victories often have unpleasant long-term consequences. Stephen Walt reminds us that the harsh provisions of the Treaty of Versailles, which ended WW I, led directly to WW II.
Since he is talking about Iran, he could also have mentioned the coup of 1953 that removed a nationalist figure, Mohammed Mossadeq, and put the shah back on the throne. Although it is regarded as one of the great CIA covert action successes of all time, it also led Iranians to believe that the US was henceforth responsible for everything the shah did. That feeling revealed itself in the Iranian revolution a quarter of a century later, which was as much anti-American as anti-shah, and the vengeful hostage crisis that followed.
Be careful what you wish for…
1 year ago
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