Kinzer does a masterful job of researching a difficult subject, presenting it fairly and keeping the account interesting through personal details.
This is an important listen, given the circumstances in the middle east today.
Top 5 for sure
Great book and an important read. This is a great book to learn more about the situation in the mid-east. They don't like the west for a reason. Prior to 1900, they loved the west. What changed?
For me, audible books are the best. I cannot imagine flipping pages on this, even digital pages.
I had no idea that we, the Americans, turned out to be stooges for the Brits. Real life lies and spies.
Kermit Roosevelt by far. He practically did it by himself.
Yes. I had trouble taking breaks.
This book really opened my eyes to why the Iranians dislike - hate - us so much. It is also something we will have to live with for a very long time.
Where it reveals that Eisenhower was persuaded by J.F. Dulles, his brother and the British into authorizing the overthrow of Dr. Mossadegh, the Prime Minister of Iran, in 1953. It was done knowingly under the false premise that the hugely popular and humanitarian Mossadegh and his many supporters, were communists - nothing could have been further from the truth. This action destroyed Iran's only real democracy ever and alienated the Iranian populace until this day.
At the end, where the Iranian oil resources are divided up between the Iranian government and a consortium of the oil Majors, including BP. Previously BP had had a monopoly of the Iranian oil resources and were the root of the problem by refusing a moderate increase of the very minor share the went to the Iranian government. Their high-handed obstinacy resulted in Mossadegh nationalizing the industry and throwing the British out. This caused them them to plead with the USA to help. The result was that BP ended up with a much smaller share of the oil than if they had given Mossadegh a small increase in revenues! Poetic justice maybe but unfortunately at the expense of Iran's people and the only true democracy it has had in its 3000 year history.
I am a westerner but spent many years working in the Middle East and lived in Iran before during and after the revolution. I learned the language and was married an Iranian for 10 years. This experience exposed me to their very rich culture and the overwhelming warmth of Iranian people and their hospitality. It hurts that the bastion of democracy, the USA, for which, I have a huge respect and admiration for the big heart of the American people, that their Administration should have stooped to this subterfuge; especially at the behest of the the British, who were desperately trying to hang on to their colonial empire. I admire Stephen Kinzer compliment him for his keen insight into the areas of the world where he has lived and worked and his ability to document events so clearly and fluidly. He really gets to the core as the history leading up to them and potential ramifications.I have subsequently listened to two of his other books, "Reset" and "Overthrow", (#2 & 3 on my list), and enjoyed them equally, especially Reset, as I am familiar with the 'Near East', having been married into a Lebanese/Syrian lady for the last 23 years.
History your college courses left out. Well worth the one credit.
A must read.The book flowed perfectly and the narrator was spot on.
This is a fascinating book. The background of US/Iranian relations becomes a lot clearer when you have read this well written and well presented history that includes how we look to the Iranians. All of a sudden, their behavior no longer seems so inexplicable.
I found this an engaging history lesson on Iran. It also informs one of the dangers in interfering where we ought not.
I wanted to learn the historical background to today's troubles with Iran so I listened to this book. It does a great job outlining in some detail about how the CIA brought down the democratically elected Iranian leader, and how this sowed the seeds for years of oppression under the Shah, and later, the Iranian hostage crisis.
If you are more interested in the recent history of Iran and have always been interested in the hostage crisis, I would instead recommend 'Guests of the Ayatollah' here from Audible: it is a more engaging listen and does a great job bringing Iran and the hostage crisis to light.
This excellent work presents a vast amount of historical information in an engaging prose that draws the reader in and carries you along a fascinating adventure. Although he does an excellent job painting a compelling picture of Iran through the 20th century, the merit of this work is almost despoiled by the taint of anti-capitalist (socialist) bias dripping from Kinzer and saturating this book.
Still, if the listener remains attentive, the historical facts and associations elucidated make this worth the listen.
Also agree the narration could be delivered in a better style for this work.
This books tells a shocking bit about US foriegn policy (not that most of it isn't shocking). Is very well written and enjoyable to get through. It is also clear what are is politics (which I don't agree with) and what are the facts. You can come to your own conclusions.