This little news story really is news! First, Defense Secretaries do not get involved in political decisions like these. That is what a "Secretary of State" and White House strategize.
Obama is grasping here by having his DEFSEC announce this pathetic announcement and the pathetic way the news organization is trying to carry water here.
First, the clock is ticking and the story has "Obama sets a rough deadline of this fall for an answer"!
When the fate of Israel and the ME hangs in the balance from nuclear inhialation from a terror state Obama gives a rough deadline, but when it comes to bailouts, cap and trade, stimulus and health care it has to be immediate, no meandering or rough deadlines (the democrats act like these issues are more life an death stuff).
Second, in order to appear strong and threatening over the issue the AP reports SECDEF states "Gates says the next step would be harsher and might include a number of punitive measures simultaneously. That would be a departure from the current international policy of gradual sanctions with punishments getting tougher each time Iran falls short.
I never thought that Obama was such a cowboy unilateralist! Simultaneous punitive measures, wow -- a departure from current international policy of gradual sanctions.
It was those very same international policy sanctions that kept Sadaam Hussein from acting up all those fifteen years and 20 resolutions later (before Bush and the US Marines placed him at room temperature).
The liberal MSM is finding it harder and harder in covering Obama's mistakes and naive policy with stories woven out of pure fantasy!