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The 1953 Iranian coup d'état saw the overthrow of the democratically-elected administration of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mosaddeq and his cabinet from power by British and American intelligence operatives working together with Iranian agents and elements of the Iranian army. Bribing Iranian officials, news media and others with British and American funds, Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), organized the covert operation aiding retired Iranian General Fazlollah Zahedi and Imperial Guard Colonel Nematollah Nassiri. The project to overthrow Iran's government was codenamed Operation Ajax.
The coup has been called "a critical event in post-war world history." It re-installed Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, replacing an elected government with a pro-Western dictatorship, and is thought to have contributed to the 1979 overthrow of the Shah and his replacement with the anti-Western Islamic Republic.