The CIA backed a coup, or overthrow of the Iranian government in 1953. This type of activity was done secretly and was usually done to install a pro-United States regime or leader, or to gain better control of a profitable natural resource or industry. The main natural resource in this area of the world is the production of crude oil, and the United States has had in a keen interest in the area from before World War II to the present day.
For an excellent story on the coup in Iran, including recently disclosed CIA documents go to:
The CIA-backed coup in Guatemala was initiated to prevent the spread of Communism in Latin America. An initial internal coup was aided by United States weapons shipments by President Truman in 1952, but fizzled out quickly when it was uncovered by loyalists. In 1954, President Eisenhower authorized the first clandestine military action ever in Latin America code-named PBSUCCESS. Eisenhower did not let the CIA use American troops. They trained and armed their own rebel forces in neighboring Nicaragua and Honduras. The result was the deposing of Communist-sympathizer and Guatemalan leader Jacobo Arbenz Guzman, and the installation of US-friendly leader Carlos Castillo Armas.
For more information on CIA activity in Guatemala go to: