Case 103 - Allied Relations in Iran: 1941-1945
Painter, David S.
During World War II, Iran was jointly occupied by Great Britain and the Soviet Union while U.S. forces operated a major supply route through Iran to the USSR, and U.S. advisers assisted the Iranian government and military. The presence of all three members of the Grand Alliance in one country led U.S. policymakers to view Iran as a testing ground, both for the principles of the Atlantic Charter and the ability of the three allies to cooperate with each other while respecting the rights of smaller nations. The interaction of the differing ideas and interests of the four nations resulted in an international crisis in Iran in late 1945. This two-part case study discusses that clash, and is intended to stimulate thinking about the reciprocal relationships among local, regional, and international factors that shape international politics and diplomacy.