Iran and Germany: A Year Old Love Affair
Hitler reciprocated by exempting the “Aryan” Iranians from the Nuremberg racial . In looking at his country's relations with Iran, Küntzel manages to highlight. Adolf Hitler of Germany and Reza Shah Pahlavi of Persia/Iran maintained good In , Nazi Germany provided Iran with what they called a Germany Scientific . However, this didn´t hinder them to make rather good relations to the Iranian. With the advent of the Nazi regime, Küntzel shows, a new dimension was added to the Irano-German relationship: the myth of shared Aryan.
The victims of this brown wave are Iranian women, forced to wear the veil, Iranian homosexuals who are jailed, adulterous women who are stoned or threatened to be stoned, like Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani and so many others.
And it also says a lot about radical islamism and what we call jihadism. Because this is Shia islam, but such things are equally found in Sunni islam. This jihadism is rooted in two different origins.
Of course, these people, jihadists, radical islamists, are Muslims. It is little known and it is the extraordinary episode of the change of name, inof the Persian empire.
Iran and Germany: A 100-Year Old Love Affair
Reza Shah, founder of the Pahlavi dynasty, happens to be a friend of Germany whose Anschluss, Sudeten coup and anti-British crusade he will support. He believes, like the future Arab Baathists, like the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, that a new German empire is being born which will be neither holy, nor Roman, nor only Germanic, but Aryan. Furthermore, he knows that this Aryan myth is, at the same time, in Germany, at the centre of an intense intellectual turmoil that is enfevering universities, revitalizing archaeology schools, dividing the academies of comparative linguistics and philology.
And he himself, Reza Shah, ten years earlier, at his coronation ceremony, had insisted that a herald announce, in the purest Persian tradition: Because is coming. The Nazis and their ideology, which was expected to reign for a thousand years, were thrown into the dustbin of history.
Without British backing, and once again without hope for American support, Persia was forced to demonstrate her goodwill towards both the Soviet Union and the presumed Soviet ally, Germany.
In his proposition of an alliance, Ribbentrop had indeed offered Persia, as well as other parts of the world, to the Soviet Union as an inducement. Nevertheless, the Soviet Union had turned down the proposal, and Hitler subsequently ordered the preparation of an attack on the Soviet Union Operation Barbarossa. The German attack on the Soviet Union 22 June was enthusiastically welcomed by Persia, presumably freeing the country from the sword of Damocles of a Soviet invasion see, e.
As a result of the new power configuration, German-Persian relations improved substantially once again. It did not take long, however, for Persia to be stripped of its illusions. It is true that since mid-June there had been German plans which aimed at India via Persia, to be carried out after a successful completion of Operation Barbarossa.
The reconnaissance missions to prepare for the realization of those plans were scheduled for no earlier than the end of August A number of Germans were indeed involved in intelligence and propaganda, but they were working for rival German institutions, which often enough pursued diverging or even contrary aims. Thus it is impossible to speak of a systematic development of a large-scale German espionage and subversion network in Persia Wanner, pp.
In view of the uncertainty as to the outcome of the war, the Shah did not want to break with Germany. Furthermore, he assumed that the Soviets would be so tied up on their western front by the German invasion that they would not be able to carry out a military action against Persia.
After the Allies had completed their occupation of the country, they forced Persia to break off diplomatic relations with Germany. Four days before the legation and the majority of the German community could leave the country 17 September the German minister in Tehran had been forced to hand over to the Allies able-bodied German men to be interned. On 29 JanuaryPersia signed a treaty of alliance with Britain and the Soviet Union, which was intended to legitimize the Allied occupation.
It was, however, not until 9 September that Persia declared war on Germany. In-between there were still informal German-Persian contacts through Persian diplomats in Switzerland Madani, pp. After the initial German plans of June had become obsolete, the German military command planned to instigate an anti-Allied revolt in the country in order to disrupt or, in the best case, to cut off supplies to the Soviet Union passing through Persia.
Some Persian exile groups also co-operated with different German services or pretended to be able to carry out anti-Allied operations in Persia. Most of these activities, however, failed due to a lack of co-ordination and the rivalry existing between the various German intelligence, military, and political authorities. After the end of the war, West German-Persian commercial relations recovered quickly.
Already on 1 JunePersia and the allied military administration of the Western zones signed a new trade and clearing agreement on behalf of the Germans. A clearing agreement completed the arrangement on 3 June The result was once again a notable increase of German exports to Persia, albeit on a rather modest scale.
The increasing trade paved the way for the re-establishment of diplomatic relations in October On 4 Novemberthe mutual relations reached a new dimension with the formal renewal of the pre-war treaties and the signing of an agreement on economic-technical co-operation. The revival of the mutual relations culminated in the visit of the shah to Germany at the end of February Ansari, pp. There had been rumors that Germany might go into a large-scale exploitation of newly discovered and supposedly extremely rich oil fields just south of Tehran, a perspective which was anxiously perceived in the West as the recurrence of an allegedly insatiable German Drang nach Osten.
Therefore the German government played down this aspect of the visit; the rather vague oil plans were soon dropped. Co-operation now started to stretch into the military field, and after the question of Persian debts to German firms dating back to the pre-war era were resolved by protracted negotiations summerPersia and West Germany signed a new agreement on 11 November regarding the promotion of investments Poller, p. The second state visit of the shah to West Germany May-June illustrated perfectly the intensification of the bilateral relations.
In the first years of the government of the social-democratic-liberal coalitioneconomic relations in particular developed rapidly amount of German exports to Persia in Whether that is true or not, it is a fact that after the Revolution ofGenscher, who had never visited Persia as foreign minister when the shah was in power, contributed to the maintenance of relatively good mutual relations.
In Septembera Persian-American compromise to end the hostage crisis, mediated by West Germany at the request of the Persians, failed only at the very last minute, although all details had already been settled Genscher, pp. After the Persian Gulf War ofGermany provided Persia with logistical support in coping with the stream of Kurdish refugees from Iraq. A series of visits to Tehran by several German ministers in and contributed to the intensification of relations.
It had also a positive effect on German exports to Persia, which, however, suffered a bigger setback due to the depression of the Persian economy after Nahostjahrbuch,pp. The establishment of diplomatic relations between Persia and the German Democratic Republic GDR at the beginning of occurred in the context of the world-wide diplomatic recognition of the GDR, which started after the two German states had signed the so-called Grundlagenvertrag basic treaty in Persia, in contrast, was striving to gain profile as an important, independent, regional power hoping for good relations with the Soviet Union and the whole Eastern bloc.
In MarchPersia and the GDR signed a trade agreement and established a joint economic commission, which met regularly at the ministerial level. The rivalry between the two German states offered Persia a particularly attractive opportunity to exercise pressure on her Western trade partners by threatening to turn to Eastern bloc countries in case the Westerners were unwilling to co-operate. The Soviet-built steelworks in Isfahan, which had been constructed completely with GDR equipment, proved the relevance of such alternatives.
Generally, especially on the part of the GDR, which was eager for visible successes in foreign policy, political considerations determined mutual relations in this period. The two states signed a cultural agreement and another on scientific-technical co-operation.
Moreover, Sindermann delivered an invitation for the shah to visit the GDR. Nevertheless, at the end of Februaryleft-wing opposition Persian exiles, who had come over from West Berlin, occupied and devastated the Persian embassy in East Berlin. This incident caused a severe diplomatic crisis. Konschel in an interview on 18 February In late summer, after the GDR had sent the deputy prime minister to Persia in order to clarify the situation, the shah canceled the planned visit, to the great relief of GDR officials.
The most important result of these talks was a clearing agreement 18 March based on the Persian rial information furnished by W. GDR firms delivered, among other items, military lorries and transformers, and they modernized the Isfahan steel works. In exchange, the GDR was able to purchase oil at fixed rial-prices.
No, the Iranian Shah Didn’t Rename His Country to Please Hitler » Mosaic
The GDR then proceeded to resell this oil to countries like Yemen or Pakistan at world market prices in order to obtain desperately needed hard currency ibid. The clearing agreement led to a series of mutual visits of ministers in the following years as well as to the revival of the joint economic commission in December Yet economic relations failed to achieve any substantial, sustainable expansion.
After the promising start at the beginning of the s and until its own demise inthe GDR failed to acquire the large-scale trade relations with Persia for which it had hoped and which had once seemed to be attainable. General review to Kochwasser, Iran und Wir: Gabriel, Die Erforschung Persiens: Engelbert Kaempfer, Amoenitates exoticae politico-physico-medicarum, tr. Haberland as Moskowitische und persische Reise: Berichte deutscher Persienreisender aus dem Mitteilungen 10,pp.
It is unrealistic, because religious totalitarianism cannot be harnessed for secular ends. The History and Present of a Fateful Friendship. Two years after Germany was put on the map as a new country, Nassereddin Shah of Iran arrived in Berlin for a state visit of unprecedented pomp.
It is not hard to see why the two sides warmed up to each other. For over a century Iran had looked for a European power capable of counter-balancing the Russian and British empires that had nibbled at the edges of Iranian territory in pursuit of their colonial ambitions.
InGermany looked like a good ally. The friendship was put to the test in the First World War, when Iran refused to join the anti-German axis and suffered as a consequence. Iranians had always regarded themselves as heirs to an Aryan identity, asserted in bas reliefs dating back to more than years ago.
Then, writers such as Herder and Schlegel claimed that Germans were descendants of original Aryan tribes somewhere in Asia, splitting into several groups moving into India, Iran and Europe. Much later, the Irish also claimed they were Aryans and named their newly-created republic Eire, which means land of Aryans. However, that was not the end of story. Tehran rejected that demand and even went further by issuing visas to hundreds of German Jews who wished to leave the Reich.
The Iranian embassy in Paris did the same for hundreds of French Jews. The late Ayatollah Khomeini boasted of his partially Arab ancestry by claiming to be a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad. To Germans, however, Aryanism was a racial concept linked to blood and biology. The misunderstanding continues even today. Remarkably, German leaders did not bother to disown Hitler and distance themselves from the murderous myths spun by Nazis.
The first German industrial fair held in a foreign country after the Second World War was hosted by Tehran in with Economy Minister Ludwig Erhard leading a delegation of over German businessmen. After that, all German Chancellors, starting with Konrad Adenauer, made a point of visiting Iran until the fall of the Shah. Even after the mullahs seized power, Germans pursued the special relationship through high-level visits, including that of Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder.
The only time the German Federal parliament approved a law unanimously was when it enacted legislation to guarantee investments in Iran. Some critics claim that the Germans are attached to Iran for purely economic reasons. Nor is Germany a major importer of oil or anything else from Iran. If Iran thumbs its nose at the US, so much the better. For over years, Germany has been the favorite European power of most Iranians. Germans reciprocate the sentiment by having a good opinion of Iran.
And, yet, it has no place in the Security Council.