Persian Dreams: Moscow and Tehran Since the Fall of the Shah

In This Review

Persian Dreams: Moscow and Tehran Since the Fall of the Shah
By John W. Parker
Potomac Books, 2008
438 pp. $27.95
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Given the deep U.S. concern over the prospect of a nuclear Iran and the grief this generates in U.S.-Russian relations at a time when Moscow seems more a part of the problem than a part of any solution, how utterly timely to have a book that details the Iranian-Russian relationship in all its complexity. And, indeed, complex it is, from the intricacies of the two countries' evolving entanglement in the swath of trouble stretching from Tajikistan through Afghanistan and then Azerbaijan to their dueling stakes in Caspian Sea oil and gas. The relationship has a dozen sides, some historical, some distinctly expedient, all of them displaying a rich array of clashing and converging interests. The nuclear relationship serves as a central thread in the account, and it is a remarkably long one, stretching back to the Soviet period and then winding its circuitous way through the Clinton and Bush administrations -- a "push-pull-but-don't-let-go dance."