disclosure of a second uranium enrichment site in Iran has led the Obama administration to shift the emphasis in its dealings with the Islamic republic -- away from engagement and toward building an international consensus for sterner action against Tehran.
Is this the right response? Let's take as given that, other things equal, it is in the world's interest that Iran not possess nuclear weapons. This might not be right - maybe Iranian nuclear weapons would help check other unfriendly forces in the Middle East - but leave that for another day. Then the following propositions all seem plausible:
1. Continued engagement just allows Iran to continue developing its nuclear capabilites.
2. Sanctions might slow Iran's nuclear development a bit, but since both Russia and China are not really on board with sanctions, this effect will be minimal.
3. Military action to destory the Iranian nuclear capabilities will address the issue in the short term, but Iran will just start over. Plus, such military action might escalate into something far more costly.
Faced with these choices, my vote is to do nothing.