In dealing with Iran, support for possible military action is in the single digits (8 percent).David Seaton's News Links
Public Agenda's Confidence in U.S. Foreign Policy Index, conducted in association with Foreign Affairs Magazine
Depending on what they want to see, commentators are speculating on the possible meaning of the resolution of the captive British sailor crisis. Complex theories about conflict among the "hardliners" and "moderates" in Tehran abound.
People are reading the tea leaves on this too closely, I believe. It is all really very simple. What you see is what you get.
Iran has proved several things. They have proved that they could do something militarily and politically significant anytime they wanted to, they proved they could do it for as long as they wanted to and they could stop doing it at the moment of their choosing. With this simple expedient Iran dominated the world headlines and television news day after day. Plainly put, Iran changed the subject of the conversation. The question stopped being, "what will be done to Iran?" and became, "what will Iran do?". And all this was done very cheaply, if you compare it with passing UN resolutions (and enforcing them) and maintaining a huge naval force in the area. And of course:
Another thing Iran did was to test the reaction of Western public opinion to possible armed conflict with Iran... It was extremely tepid. As we can see from the poll quoted at the top less than 10% of the American public is behind military action. Among the allies 0.0%. The only people still hot to trot are some right wing Israelis... who knows, that might be enough to get a war started, but not to finish it.
"There's been a $5 or $6 premium that's been built into the price of oil over this," said Phil Flynn, vice president and energy analyst at Alaron Trading. "Even though this crisis has ended, the oil market is still on guard that the tensions in the Middle East are going to continue." ABC - NEWS
And as we can see we can see from the "Condi and Nancy Show", American diplomacy in the Middle East, like the US Army is a broken toy. Iran is playing with the disintegration of America's position in the Middle East. "Hard" is really not the same as "complicated". DS