Meantime, the pretense of negotiations has allowed Tehran to play for time to advance its programs. When Mr. Obama took office, Iran had enriched 1,000 kilos of reactor-grade uranium. In its last report from November, U.N. inspectors found that Iran has produced 7,611 kilos to reactor grade, along with 232 kilos of uranium enriched to 20%, which is close to bomb-grade. Last month, Iran declared that it would install 3,000 advanced centrifuges at its Natanz facility, which can enrich uranium at two to three times its current rate.
As for the sanctions, they may hurt ordinary Iranians but this regime is famously indifferent to the suffering of its own people. The Ayatollah also doesn’t seem to take the Administration’s talk about “all options being on the table” seriously. Mr. Obama’s nomination of Iran dove Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense reinforces that impression, as do reports that the White House blocked Pentagon and CIA plans to arm the opposition that’s fighting to overthrow Iran’s client regime in Damascus. An America that won’t help proxies in a proxy war isn’t likely to take the fight directly to Iran’s nuclear facilities. (Wall Street Journal, Posted 9 Feb 13)