Some food for thought: For Iran, A Policy Of Patience, by Fareed Zakaria.
Always keep in mind our history. Zakaria reminds us that China was very aggressive during the 50s and 60s, but we did not need to preemptively invade.
Iran is aggressive, yes, but I’m not sure if the situation is exactly analogous. I’m unconvinced that the US faces an existential threat, but Israel? Was China preaching an apocalyptic message, as Iranian President Ahmadinejad is?
Still, I’m convinced that the best way to “win” is to outmanuever Iran diplomatically, instead of continuing on this course of bullying and intimidation, which obviously isn’t getting us anywhere, and instead of sounding the drumbeats of war. We still have time before Iran develops a nuclear weapon.
Not all diplomatic avenues are appeasement. If we let Iran develop nuclear energy, but closely monitor what they’re doing, it will be a small victory. It will allow us to get our tentacles in Iran… maybe even some human intelligence. Maybe if we have scientists working with their scientists, some of their scientists may spy for us? I still believe that this is the best course of action.
I think the history lesson from Zakaria is good to keep this situation in perspective.