Political Science Research Paper on USA Involvement in War with Iran

USA Involvement in War with Iran


Different nations, government agencies and organizations have raised concerns over the justification for the war between Iran and Afghanistan. With the involvement of USA in the conflict, discussions today align to justifiable morals, political considerations, economic retrogressions and environmental degradation. The impact of conflict between Iran and Afghanistan on world political economy is undeniably deteriorating. For example, the 2008 world inflation was because of reduction in world oil supply, which affected various industrial sectors across the world. On the part of expenses, American economy has faced great challenges resulting from huge finances and resources spent on the war on the pretext of providing security against terrorist. The conflict between Iran and Afghanistan has elicited several international debates on how the war affects global economy and the most appropriate means that can be used to put to an end the conflict. To some regulators, the conflict would finally lead to Great Depression if not checked in time.

On several occasions, the US government has worked in close relations with other interested nations like Britain under the umbrella of the Soviet Union and organizations such as UN to ensure complete peace and stability in both Iran and Afghanistan. The strategic plan here is to influence the two nations and to make them reduce the amount of nuclear weapons manufactured and released into markets. The response given by Iran in 2010 showed significant collaboration but only on condition, that Afghanistan too had to stop manufacturing nuclear weapons. Based on the response of the two nations, the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan appears to be politically propelled with an aim of controlling world political economy. Even though the US is seen as the only nation that has come in light to promote dialogue between Iran and Afghanistan in order to come into common terms, the conflict between these two nations is controlled, financed and managed by some unknown forces that have the interest of shifting world’s economic operations and political influence for their own benefit. Various theories have been merged to explain the reasons for conflict and why other nations not directly involved in the conflict decide to take part.

Introduction / Thesis Statement

On the context of war based on political ideologies, America is known to have played a central role in influencing world political stand. Emergence of the Soviet Union and the need to build strong political economies has provoked nations to engage in those processes that would enable them transform their governments and making adjustments in development policies to conform to those of developed worlds. Based on the understanding of US political operation, historians base their discussions on US extensive involvement in issues affecting global socio-economic equilibrium and democracy in political processes. Divergent ideas are raised concerning the interest of USA in the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan. Some scholars believe that US involvement in the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan is a political drive while others view this on the side of obtaining economic control. If USA is truly aiming at ending the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan then why is the conflict still intensifying even after several policies, mediation talks and sanctions imposed on the two governments? There seem to be some forces behind the humanitarian views. These forces would explain best the reasons as to why the US government has provided much financial support as well as military support to Iran and Afghanistan. This paper examines some of the mentioned reasons based on applicable theories and evidences that regulate our political description and the current stand of US government on the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan. One would pose a hypothetical statement that USA tends to gain much from her participation in the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan.   


Historical background to the conflict

The historical context identifies a long time relationship between Iran and Afghanistan, which had been well established, based on common interests and shared dynasty. No single person could imagine of two nations built on common interest to engage in war and constant conflict. The two nations benefited formally from each other in terms of resources through trade. In early 18th century, the well-formulated relationship began declining due to foreign interventions and interest in some of the resources shared between the two nations. The Dutch, British and Russia established a formal relationship with Iran and Afghanistan with an aim of controlling the oil patches and other mineral areas within the two territories. From the day of colonization and exchange of foreign control in Iran and Afghanistan, there has been constant conflicts that do not only match the quest to control oil wells but also gears at unleashing full control over the entire middle east and her correspondence. The emergent of foreign rule into the land did not bring significant change however and the two nations could still work as one. This dates back to around 1722 when Iran assisted Afghanistan in the quest to obtain self-governance and internal control. Studies have shown that Iran and Afghanistan have had close connections that can be traced through language, commonness and cultural practices. The strong ties between Iran and Afghanistan can be links to 1990s when the oppressive government, the Taliban, took control over Afghanistan. The rule by the Taliban group imposed regulations, which were disputed by the Iranian people on the basis that restricting important resource like water sources would pose disaster in the lives of the population.

In 1921, Afghanistan and Iran through diplomatic relations decided to sign a treaty that would put the two countries into good terms again. However, in around September 1961, the two countries fell off again based on mistrust. It was speculated that Iran was preparing weapons and was getting ready to go into war. However, the sources did not reveal the opponent in this case. The conquest of Afghanistan by Soviet Union in around 1979 aroused the healing wound between Iran and Afghanistan. At this time, the settled dispute on water rights resurfaced and the need to control Helmand River remained the main area of interest and target. This era marked a rise in hatred since every nation saw it wise to remain with at least an area of control and the target remained mineral areas and water sources like the Helmand.

In late 1979, the conflict between Iran and Afghanistan began intensifying. Soviet Union made several applications to send over 100, 000 army troops to Afghanistan with an intention of removing out of power the then king. The worst part of the Iranian revolt led to killing of Iranian president in the same year. By definition, Iran had imposed political sanctions on the government of Afghanistan and this made Afghanistan to respond by recruiting several young men into the army, making preparations for any possible war that might have risen.

The revolutionary process in Afghanistan from 2000 to 2008 propelled hatred between the Iran and Afghanistan. Each nation became suspicious of one another because of possible attack. The growing suspicion facilitated the urge to manufacture weapons that could be used in case of war. The rise in production of dangerous nuclear weapons between 2002 and 2009 was a challenge to those countries whose economies depended on oil from Middle East.

In general, the propellant of the mentioned conflict between Iran and Afghanistan is USA. Afghanistan seemed to have gained favor form US government and between 1978 and 1979, Iranian revolution found their grounds and overthrew some of the leaders who were supported by US government like Mohamed Reza. The replacement of the leader by Ayatollah Ruhollah, an anti-US Muslim initiated conflict between Afghanistan and Iran. Therefore, the conflict and war between Iran and Afghanistan can be looked at from a historical perspective and ranked as one of the most devastating wars affecting American economy and political affiliation.             

The overthrow of Mossadegh (Operation Ajax) – 1953

Mohammad Mossadegh was an Iranian powerful prime minister who had early faced a jail term due to his dislike for authoritarian rule. This occurred before his accent politics and assumption of power in around 1950s. In his mind, Mohammad had advocated for complete rule under kingship form of government and a dedication to nationalize oil and oil mines in Iran. The rule by Mohammad never lasted for long due to differences in political ideologies and his rapid response to nationalize Iranian oil. The regulations posed by British in around 1953 led to economic tensions and political mistrust in Iran. These events significantly reduced the popularity and political power that Mohammad had struggled to build over the past decades by undergoing several jail terms. The worst part of the proceedings was the economic sanctions that were put on Iranian population that made the people to put blame of Mohammad. The economic and political situation of Iran was constantly diminishing due to foreign withdrawals from the land while making investments in other neighboring nations like Afghanistan. The Iranian people split into two groups, the group that supported Mohammad and another group that opposed the way the prime minister handled issues of politics and economic progress. The opposing groups raised conflicts among themselves and as the rivalry intensified, Mohammad was significantly losing his political popularity and support more especially among the working class. From the description of his accent to power, Mohammad had gained much support from the working class groups who saw his objectives and love for Iran to be genuine and implementable. The loss on political platform and diminishing popularity made Mohammad to be autocratic rather than remaining an advocator for democracy.

The loss in familiarity and morals was becoming controversial to most of his supporters and in 1952; Mohammad attempted to assassinate one of his cabinet ministers. This act raised conflicts and revolutionary campaigns followed almost immediately. In this same period, Mohammad decided to jail most of his political opponents in order to regulate the rising hatred between his government and the emerging opposition groups. This act was not taken well by majority of Iranian population and resulted into nationwide anger and blame. Most of the earlier supporters of Mohammad saw this as an act of dictatorship and irresponsible control of anger. The developed animosity against Mohammad’s rule compelled majority of parliamentary supports to send their resignation letters with a march to quit their services. In 1953, most of the parliamentary supporters had resigned subjecting the prime minister to make laws and present to the public for voting and not as before when every law made would be passed by the National Front seats in Parliament.       

The act to dissolve parliament was seen as a form of power assumption and complete dictatorship and it emerged that the prime minister was assuming the role played by other agencies in the country. The CIA and the Shah’s who had earlier opposed to engage in coup finally merged on the pretext that if Mohammad was to subject the country into such an oblivion, then the country would not make future response to some critical issues affecting the land. The new generation had in mind that any new leader coming from the lineage of Mohammad would reflect the same control and oppression felt over the period of Mohammad rule. It appeared that the CIA was only waiting for approval of Shah and immediately the Shah accepted the process, the CIA did not think twice. The CIA had put in place all the measure and immediately Mohammad was overthrown, General Fazlollah Zahedi assumed leadership over Iran.

During his trial, Mohammad rejected the basis of a coup and the way it was propelled claiming that under the constitutional mandate, both Shah and the CIA had no jurisdictional right to conduct the processes since Iran was under complete monarchical administration. Every action should have followed constitutional process and the coup was one of the unfair acts according to Mohammad. The case was uplifted by the court and Mohammad assumed his role as the Iranian prime minister. The second term in service by Mohammad after the attempted coup was a blow to Shah and the organizers of the coup. Some of the plotter of the coup ended up in jail while shah flew out of the country to Iraq to obtain refuge. The judicial defeat was a motivation to Mohammad who felt that he now had full control of Iran with not opposition. Little did the prime minister realize that general Zahedi was rebuilding the team and developing a revolt in secret. The public was not pleased by the fact that Shah had left the country for fear of falling victim of the growing animosity and ideological differences between Mohammad government and the emerging opposing groups. General Zahedi used public concern to have Shah back into the country to recruit more supporters and an objective of getting Mohammad out of power through a revolution process and not on a plotted coup as earlier observed.

On the actual day of revolution, a large group of Iranian citizens picked conducted street demonstrations, beating any supporter of Tudeh Party they came across and demanding to have Mohammad convicted for all the crimes he has committed. The demonstrating individuals moved to Mohammad house and threw a fired tank. Mohammad was compelled to hand himself over to the army and never organized his supporters for revenge and renewed control. By evening of that day, Zahedi and his supporters has taken full control of the Iran and organizing for a rejuvenated government operations. Following previous failure of the plotted coup, Shah decided to remain detached to Iran politics until the final removal of Mohammad from power. After the defeat and assumption of power by Zahedi, Mohammad was arrested, put to court and latter given a death sentence but Shah intervened and the court uplifted his death sentence to a three years confinement Iranian military prison.   

American response or provocation – supporting the Shah (1954 – 1979)

Studies reveal that USA played a central role in the administration process of the coup in which Shah was involved. The US government decided to put some restrictions on the operation of Iran Government and on a compensation basis. Since the Iranian government had requested for the restoration of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, the US government assured Iran that if they could do away with the AIOC’s monopoly, then their quest would be granted. This occurred in around 1954 where some American companies had the interest of drawing Iranian petroleum after the success of the plotted coup. In addition to the promises made release of fund by the American government to finance the coup made Shah to declare an earlier victory with an agreement to revive the collapsed Iranian economy. The US government also pledged her finances in helping Shah to fulfill his urge for modernization and facilitating campaigns towards respect for humanity as one of the ways towards national unity and progress. The execution process of the coup had target on the role played by Shah in the administration process. The progression was that Shah would reject Mohammad and his administration and instead replace Mohammad with general Zahedi. This process was to be aided by Abbas Farzanegan who received foreign support from major superpowers like America and British. Both America and British governments worked toward providing support to the anti-Soviet politics in Iran.

Various opinions raised support the notion that US government took part in the Iran coup by providing finances. The administration process under this context was administered by Dwight and supervised by Allen Dulles, the brother to John Foster. The finances used here influenced many religious groups who felt that it was now necessary to regain freedom from the dictatorship action imposed by Mohammad. Other than providing finance and assisting throughout the mobilization process, the US government assisted Shah to escape Iran after the failure of the first coup. The US government provided security and necessary control with an aim of ensuring that their plans of conquering Iran and controlling petroleum sites.       

The Islamic Revolution – 1979

Even after the rise in Iranian economy, Mohammad received serious oppositions on the way he used his secret service to rule the country. Earlier on, the government had promised her citizens democracy and respect for personal opinions on the basis that application of democratic rule was the only sure way of showing nationalism. Based on this argument, the Muslim population organized a revolution, which they named Shi’i. The group led by Ayatollah Khomeini was opposed to the roles played by Shah and his support for Mohammad. The message released by Ayatollah was passed from one individual to another through duplicated music cassettes. This message was meant to reduce the oppressive rule experience by the opposing groups alongside putting to an end mysterious deaths and threats experienced by non-supporters of Mohammad.

September 11, 2001 and the American invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq

The American inversion of Afghanistan and Iraq on 11 September 2001 raised doubts on the administrative process of George Bush in handling terrorists. In response, the use government claimed that the attack aimed at controlling the ongoing war against terrorist in the two countries. The US government responded promptly by giving funds to the affected families and conducting intensive investigation on terrorist in order to develop evidence and proof for the action against terrorists.

Research conducted on this attack points to poor administration process and lack of respect to political integrity to the Middle East nations. Even though the US government was to conduct an investigation and arrest terrorists, people viewed this act as one way to maim Iraqis and Afghanistan economy.

Theoretical construct

Conflicting ideas are raised concerning the relationship between American and most of the Middle East nations such as Iran. Historians have raised various arguments over the policies developed by the US government as a way to monitor and control activities of the Iranian population more especially in areas touching on political administration and regular practices touching on social and economic progress. At the stage of the conflict within Iran, US decided to taken a decentralized position by supporting Shah. The overlying factor for the support the US government offered to Shah was to obtain favor among the Iranian population as the only nation concerned with the suffering the Iranian population is facing. The classical redemptions and the description of the coup as it occurred in Iran still link to one of the middle east Historian named Ervand Abrahamian who felt that the clash between the imperialists and the nationalists in a third world country is a show of disregard. The act of setting two individuals or nations to fight against each other in order to gain advantage over the resources is a show of selfishness and disregard to humanity. According to Ervand, the propelled coup in Iran by the Americans showed a communal danger both to the Iranian population and to the entire global community.  In his analysis of the Iranian situation, Abrahamian maintains that the oil in Iran was the main cause of the conflict since the oil wells had drawn the attention of foreign countries that had the urge to complete their industrialization processes. America and British became the only two nations that had direct link to the observed situations in Iran and since Mohammad had rejected any form of foreign rule in Iran, the best way was to overthrow his government and put into power someone who was pro-soviet union. Thinking back early 1950s when Mohammad became the Iranian prime minister, he promised the public and his supporters to remain a real nationalist and democracy in every aspect. The rejection by foreign governments and imposed economic sanctions mad e Iranian population to hate Mohammad with no good proof as claimed that the Prime minister was killing the country’s economy by refusing to work with foreign governments.

Useful theories to explain the possible conflict

The conflict between Iran and Afghanistan can be linked to the action of USA and other foreign governments in trying to redefine their political ambitions and economic influence. Some of the theories that best explain such actions include theories of capitalism, communism and centralism. As observed in the past, the US government has been on the forefront trying to keep peace between the two nations. On the extreme end, the US government has deployed several of her army troops into Iran and Afghanistan and any external force except that of the Soviet Union is welcomed in to the two nations. The claimed to control terrorism in both Iran and Afghanistan is based on self-interest. On the capitalism side, the US government invests a lot of capital in the war between Afghanistan and Iran with an objective of controlling some of the resources that are important for industrial growth and economic progress. 

Data from the film Iran (Is Not the Problem)

The information contained within the documentary film Iran (is not the problem)  elaborates of the failures of the US mass media to meet the expectations of the expectations of the public by providing irrelevant and inaccurate information about the diminishing relationships between US and Iran. The film revealed the stand of Iran on issues of nuclear weapons. It became worrying that the Iran government was not ready to negotiate or bend her urge to control production of nuclear weapons. Instead, Iran was willing to continue with her plans to manufacture several nuclear weapons. The information contained within the film showed that the Iran was struggling to meet her democratic expectations based on historical imperialism. However, this was regarded as hypocritical since the standoff between America and Iran is purely both political and economic. The exchange in ideological differences constant manufacture of nuclear weapons is inevitable in Iran and it seems that no external force could compel Iran to stop such processes.


As observed from the evidences, it appears that the war between Iran and Afghanistan is inevitable and will remain as long as the two countries base their support on foreign governments to help in normalizing situations. The basic ideology here is that in war, as one county loses, one gains and the gaining would want such situations to continue. On theoretical application, both Iran and Afghanistan in entire control of the situation and can possible work their ways to ensure peaceful relationships without foreign interference. The reason why the war in Iran may not end very soon is because America and other foreign governments are heavily investing on the war. America releases huge amounts of finances with an aim of controlling the war. However, such funds are used by the nation to finance their supporters. Still on propelling factors, Iran is endowed with many resources and from such resources like oil, the funds generated are majorly converted into manufacturing of nuclear weapons and other war weapons. The controlling unit of the Iranian army is majorly composed of warring groups and their engagement in war in the main achievement.

The Iranian government feels neglected on matters of global economic participation. Even though the country serves the entire world with oil and oil products, Iran still remains unrecognized among the developed economies. Even after the collapse of the Mohammad government, the nation could not have projected on the most appropriate measure to help become competitive on matters of global production and supply of various products. USA support to Afghanistan seemed to provoke Iran who then pledged to manufacture nuclear weapons.