New York Magazine:

Over the weekend, the New York Times revealed the central role that Chase Manhattan Bank played in persuading the Carter administration to let the deposed Shah of Iran into the United States, an action that triggered the Iran hostage crisis. Drawing on the newly unsealed papers of Chase’s former chairman David Rockefeller, the Times reconstructed a “secret history” of the bank’s “Project Eagle” — a scheme for securing the Iranian dictator (and extremely valued Chase customer) Mohammad Reza Pahlavi asylum in the United States, promoting an Iranian counterrevolution that would restore Pahlavi’s allies to power and prolonging the Iran hostage crisis so as to increase Ronald Reagan’s prospects for winning the 1980 election.

Yet the most shocking detail in the Times report — or, more precisely, the one that best illustrates the alarming normality of Trump’s illiberal foreign policy — may be this:

Over lunch at the Knickerbocker Club in New York, Mr. Carter’s special envoy to Tehran, Gen. Robert E. Huyser, told the Project Eagle team that he had urged Iran’s top military leaders to kill as many demonstrators as necessary to keep the shah in power.

If shooting over the heads of demonstrators failed to disperse them, “move to focusing on the chests,” General Huyser said he told the Iranian generals, according to minutes of the lunch. “I got stern and noisy with the military,” he added, but in the end, the top general was “gutless.”

Bookmark the permalink.