It is widely recognised that the Anglo-American ‘special relationship’ fluctuated following the Second World War. A “Persistent rivalry” was especially evident in policy towards the Middle East and its oil. Immediately after the war, the American attitude to Palestine seemed to complicate British policy. Events in Iran also reflected the clash between the British imperative to protect its national and imperial interests in the region on the one hand, and the American preoccupation with the Cold War and containment on the other. The subsequent differences over Egypt/ Nasser are a matter of public record as are the problems which arose over the British withdrawal from “East of Suez”. Perhaps the very closeness of the relationship between the UK and the US served to heighten expectations.