The U.N. is escalating the Iran nuclear crisis

If the Security Council were truly concerned about Iran's nuclear programme, it would have lifted sanctions in the light of the IAEA's latest report and thereby secured Iranian adherence to the Additional Protocol. On Monday evening, the United Nations Security Council voted 14-0 with one abstention to impose a fresh set of sanctions against Iran for failing to suspend its civilian nuclear fuel cycle programme. The resolution had the backing of not just the United States, Britain and France but also Russia and China. The latter two, who have made much of their official commitment to a diplomatic solution to the Iranian issue, justified their support for the latest resolution by adver tising the absence of any reference to the "use of force' in its language. But this reading of the text is wilfully na