FT.com / Comment & analysis / Columnists - Artful Iran outplays hesitant America: "Whatever else might be said about the Iranian regime, it has played its diplomatic hand adroitly. A calculatedly equivocal response this week to international demands that it suspend its nuclear activities was scarcely unexpected. It seems likely nonetheless to divide the United Nations Security Council.
After countless hours bargaining with their Iranian counterparts, European officials speak of a deeply frustrating process. The Iranians play by their own rules. In most international negotiations, diplomats will tell you, once agreement has been reached on the issues of principle, the details can be tidied up later. Not so with Tehran. Everything has be nailed down. Otherwise, as one official puts it: “You buy the car only to discover afterwards that you have to pay extra if you want the wheels.”"