Iran's Nuclear Program: Don't Panic.

Considering that the instinct in some quarters to panic over the revelation that Iran has a second secret nuclear program, the Obama administration seems to have played this one pretty well. American intelligence appears to have known about the plant for some time, which was part of the reason Iran came forward in the first place. By improving relations with Russia by dismantling the missile shield and making nuclear non-proliferation a focus of the G-20 summit, the president has succeeded in putting the U.S. on high ground diplomatically and embarrassing Iran: first because of the deception, and second because the deception failed. The sanctions that the right has been clamoring for for months can now be applied with more international support.

Obviously, none of that means that the news should be dismissed -- but Gary Sick argues convincingly that the people who have been crying for urgent armed interference with Iran have been consistently wrong, and Marc Lynch thinks that the way this situation has played out may hamper Iran's ability to reasonably "oppose the intrusive inspections and monitoring regime" Sick argues for as an alternative to war.

So seriously, don't panic.

-- A. Serwer

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