The Eisenhower administration’s covert strategy was first applied in Iran where the stability of the shah’s regime was deemed essential from the American national security perspective.
Because Eisenhower’s new emphasis on covert action proved capable of resolving potential revolutions in America’s favor, the strategy came to dominate much of America’s activity in the Third World during the remainder of the Cold War.
Shortly after CIA intervention resolved Iran’s domestic leadership crisis to the shah’s advantage, the Americans, fearful of Soviet ambitions, entered into an agreement, making Iran the nominal owner of its own oil.
But — the agreement also gave six US companies a lucrative 40 percent share of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) consortium.
The agreement did allow Iran, though, to accrue much higher oil revenues, a condition that enabled the country to finance the arms expenditures and military build-up which occurred in the 1970s.
At this early point in the Cold War, issues of national security clearly meshed in America’s political consciousness with interests which later took on overriding economic importance.
It was not until the 1960s that the multinational corporation became a mechanism for the achievement of Cold War strategies and objectives.
And — not until the 1970s did exorbitant oil revenues combine with the goals of Third World governments and the multinational corporation to create almost unlimited opportunity for the international defense industry in the Third World.