To keep up, the embattled government has done everything in its power over the last year first to stanch the flow of stories and then to make the stories that inevitably leak out impossible for outsiders to verify.

In the last several years, at least since 2004, Iran has created a large network of installations of various kinds in Venezuela and in other countries in Latin America. It has engaged vigorously in activities covering such areas as diplomacy, commerce, finance, industry and energy. The total of the announced investments of Iran in Latin America exceeds $20 billion.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Thursday the United States has serious disagreements with Brazil over its efforts to mediate with Iran over its nuclear program. But Clinton stressed the United States desire for good relations with the emerging South American power.

The international community, including Turkey and Brazil, is in staunch opposition to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. We are also dedicated to achieving a world without nuclear weapons.

The agreement between Iran, Turkey and Brazil for a swap deal on the stockpile of Tehran's nuclear fuel sets the stage for a diplomatic pirouette of high significance for regional security. The paradigm shift affects Indian interests.

When it unveiled an accord among the big powers of the United Nations Security Council for new sanctions on Iran, the US said it was a rebuff of a deal reached this week by Turkey and Brazil for an Iran nuclear fuel swap. But now, the Obama administration says, both sanctions and the fuel swap should be able to proceed: Both address aspects of Iran’s nuclear ambitions, although they take separate paths in doing that.

"Diplomacy emerged victorious," Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva declared on May 17, after his country and Turkey signed its sketchy nuclear deal with Iran. That was something of a reach. But, if not victorious, diplomacy was taking a rare turn on center stage...

The deal, which is similar to one scuttled in October 2009, was in all likelihood designed to forestall a new round of sanctions. In this regard, it doesn't appear to have worked.