March 18, 1944
Letter, Dimitrov to Molotov, 'The Situation in the People's Party of Iran'
This document was made possible with support from Leon Levy Foundation
to Cde. V. M. MOLOTOV
I am sending you:
1. A report, "The situation in the People's Party of Iran", which we received from our Iranian correspondent Cde. Malyshev.
2. A report of the CC of the People's Party of Iran.
I am also sending this material to Cde. Dekanozov.
18 March 1944
1. The situation in the People's Party
2. A report of the CC of the People's Party of Iran. [not included]
3. Memos to Dr. RADMANESH, YUSUF ARDEBILI, KHALIL INKILYAB, and SEYYED ZIAEDDIN. [not included]
[handwritten in the lower left-hand
corner of the title page: "Reported to
V. M. Molotov 25 March 1944"]
THE SITUATION IN THE PEOPLE'S PARTY
After the death of Suleiman Mirza it was decided not to elect a Party chairman, and all important issues were to be decided by a majority of the CC.
It was decided for now to communicate with the Soviet representatives through Dr. Radmanesh, and three CC members will be selected for this purpose later. Party communications with the Soviet representatives will be of an absolutely official nature as occurs with other democratic parties and leaders.
The merger of the trade unions. The issue of the unification of the two largest trade union centers is drawing to a close. Several meeting have been held between representatives of both trade union centers. The following principles of the merger were agreed upon:
1. Recognition of the political leadership of the People's Party by the trade unions as the only democratic party of Iran.
2. The governing body of the new united trade union center is to be formed of four representatives of the leadership of People's Party trade unions, three representatives of the trade unions led by Yusuf Ardebili, and two representatives directly from the People's Party.
3. Neither Yusuf Ardebili nor Khalil Inkilyab (informational material about these two person was sent previously) will be placed in the governing center of the united trade union center [SIC].
4. Khalil Inkilyab is beginning an open struggle verbally and in the press against the factional activity of Yusuf Ardebili, which has led to a weakening of the unity of the workers.
The election campaign.
The results of the elections in Tehran have been announced. Not one of the candidates from the People's Party was elected in spite of the fact that the most active campaign of the People's Party was launched in Tehran. The widely-launched election campaign of the People's Party bore its own fruits: the ideas of the People's Party were conveyed to a large number of people, chiefly the workers and craftsmen of Tehran. The political influence of the Party grew considerably as a result of the active election campaign (the effort of the government to gain the support of the People's Party and also the effort to unify workers' organizations might serve as an example of the above).
A campaign against the candidates of the People's Party was waged in many places with every possible dishonest, fraudulent method. For example, a government group sent its own candidate to Gorgan, where Lesani, the People's Party candidate ran. Soheili (the Premier) declared that this new candidate was nominated in [Gorgan] on the recommendation of Soviet representatives.
Shariat-zade, who had given a bribe of 30,000 tumans to Soheili, was elected in Mazanda[r]an. Shariat-zade's brother was expelled from Tehran by the government for participating in a fascist organization.
The opening of the Majlis was postponed to 26 February 1944. The People's Party will not create a separate group in the Majlis. It will try to create a single group of all democratically-minded deputies against the group of Seyyed Ziaeddin.
The CC has developed a platform of the People's Party's parliamentary demands. It especially stresses peasant demands. I will send the text of the platform arrived later as soon as it has been finally approved.
Speculation about the new makeup of the cabinet.
Soheili's cabinet will have to resign with the opening of the Majlis. They assume that the new government will be formed by Qavam-es-Saltane. Qavam is a big landowner and a reactionary, but his landholdings are in the north, in the province of Gilan, and therefore he is forced to support a pro-Soviet policy in order get the Russians to have a favorable attitude toward him. The British are against Qavam coming to power; they have Seyyed Ziaeddin as their candidate, but their prospects of pushing through the latter are weak in view of the unpopularity of Seyyed Zia. Thus in these conditions Qavam is viewed as the lesser evil and will be supported by our representative in pursuing these aims. It also speaks in Qavam's favor that this person is firm, decisive, and straightforward, and who keeps his promises.
The People's Party managed to stir up a broad movement of workers and democratic elements of the intelligentsia for the organization of the trial of Mukhtari, the former chief of police; Rasekh and Naruman, former prison wardens; and Ahmedi, a former prison doctor, accused in the murders of a number of political figures in prison such as Doctor Erani, Khan Baba Asad (chief of the Bakhtiari tribe), and Farukhi (a poet and newspaper editor). The public demands the death sentence for the accused.
I am sending the report of the CC of the People's Party.
25 February 1944 MALYSHEV
Message from Dimitrov to Molotov about the 1944 Iranian elections and the upcoming merger of the country's trade unions. Dimitrov attributes the People's Party's loss in the election to corruption among its opponents, but states that the campaign for the People's Party was successful in introducing its ideas to Iranian citizens.
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