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For several decades, relations between the United States and Iran and between Iran and the West have been shrouded in misconceptions and prejudices. Neither the U.S. nor the West has done anything to achieve a peaceful relationship with that country, and the current permanent state of distrust could lead to war at any moment.

Some basic facts need to be restated. The long-standing conflict can be traced largely to Aug. 19, 1953, when both the United Kingdom and the U.S. orchestrated a coup that overthrew Iran’s democratically elected prime minister, Mohammad Mossadegh. The reason: Mossadegh was trying to audit the books of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC), a British corporation, to change the terms of that company’s access to Iranian oil.

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