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Promises, Promises

Sell out your friends, and you're a cretin. Sell them out and get nothing in return, and you're a cretin and a fool. Well, here's what our Poland & Czech Republic sell-out bought us:

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev may have joined the U.S. and other Western powers last week in threatening Iran with tough new sanctions, but he left plenty of room for the Kremlin to break ranks when it comes to making them stick.

U.S. officials rejoiced at the strong Russian rhetoric during Mr. Medvedev's visit to the U.S. last week. The Russian president seemed to drop Moscow's usual opposition to sanctions, saying they might have to be used if Iran doesn't come clean about its nuclear program.

But analysts and Western diplomats noted the Kremlin has shifted its rhetorical tone in the past, as well, only to slip back to its traditional opposition to any moves that seriously increase pressure on Iran.

And the Chinese were never on board, meaning even Russian help -- real, not counterfeit -- wouldn't have amounted to much.