Courtesy Reuters

THE alleged reason for the Russian and British invasion of Iran last August was the refusal of the Iranian Government to expel an unknown number of Germans who, it was feared, were paving the way for a German coup d'état. A second purpose, stressed in the press and alluded to by Winston Churchill in his speech of September 9, 1941, was to open a road for the transport of war supplies to Soviet Russia. Back of both reasons was doubtless a British desire to strengthen the defenses of India against eventual German attack.

No official statement has yet revealed the exact number of persons who were interned after the Russian and British occupation as dangerous to the Allied cause. Reports spoke of 700 Germans being in Teheran alone, and there probably was a somewhat smaller number than that outside the capital. Groups totalling more than 400 have been, in fact, evacuated via Turkey.

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