North Korea began developing nuclear weapons as an NPT party before announcing its withdrawal from the treaty. And Iran is flouting the rules, seeking to develop a nuclear weapons capability under the guise of a peaceful enrichment program.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton 
Well, what I’ve said consistently is, is that it is unacceptable for Iran to possess a nuclear weapon, that we’re going to do everything we can to prevent that from happening.
President Barack Obama 
While we were arguing about religious freedom because of political pressure brought to bear by an Islamic cleric in New York, Iran prepared for yesterday’s fueling of the Middle East’s first nuclear reactor. One day later, basking in his victory over the West on “Defense Industry Day,” Iranian President Ahmadinejad announced the development of a bomber drone capable of carrying multiple cruise missiles. Defense experts have warned that a missile is the most likely means for Iran to deliver a nuclear weapon. 
The U.S. has a history of sanctions against Iran extending back to 1987.  The effect of these sanctions on deterring the country’s nuclear program has been minimal, according to a September 2009 Congressional Research Service report:
Despite this pressure, Iran continues to enrich uranium, install and operate additional centrifuges, and conduct research on new types of centrifuges. Tehran has also continued to produce centrifuge feedstock, as well as work on its heavy-water reactor and associated facilities. 
Days after the report was released, President Obama, French President Sarkozy, and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown made it clear that Iran’s behavior was unacceptable, and that this time they were going to do something about it:
But the size and configuration of this facility is inconsistent with a peaceful program….
It is time for Iran to act immediately to restore the confidence of the international community by fulfilling its international obligations. 
We cannot let the Iranian leaders gain time while the motors are running. If by December there is not an in-depth change by the Iranian leaders, sanctions will have to be taken. 
Prime Minister Brown:
Confronted by the serial deception of many years, the international community has no choice today but to draw a line in the sand. 
Not to be outdone by her betters, in June 2010 Nancy Pelosi boasted of powerful new sanctions passed by Congress:
All Members of Congress, regardless of party, agree: a nuclear Iran is simply unacceptable. It is a threat to the region, to the United States, and to our allies across the globe….
In the last year, Iran has: concealed major nuclear facilities; repeatedly blocked UN nuclear inspectors from doing their job; and openly threatened to, as the Iranian President said quote, ‘wipe Israel off the face of the map.’ End of quote….
This is the strongest Iran sanctions legislation ever passed by the Congress. 
The result of all the posturing was a functioning nuclear reactor, and a new drone capable of delivering cruise missiles.
Perhaps Iranian officials do not read press releases, or listen to the vacuous pronouncements of world leaders. They do not appear to be deterred. The West is unable to come up with an effective method to discourage Iran’s nuclear program, and our impotence is further underscored by empty threats and repeated drawing of “lines in the sand.” What possible reason could Iran have for not developing nuclear weapons, given the West’s inaction? The new drone does not have the range to reach Israel, but given Iran’s announced goal of destroying our ally, and the technological progress they are demonstrating, who could possibly misconstrue the intent of their efforts?
As long as politicians have fingers, they will point blame and hold themselves accountable for nothing. Fueling the Bushehr reactor will lead to endless talk about the Iranian nuclear threat. Lips will flap, threats will be made, and the word “unacceptable” will be worn out, but nothing substantive will come from any of it. Western sanctions will inevitably fail, and our discovery that Iran managed to build a nuclear weapon will, in all likelihood, be preceded by a very bright flash.
1..U.S. Department of State. Remarks on Nuclear Nonproliferation at the University of Louisville as Part of the McConnell Center’s Spring Lecture Series. April 9, 2010.
2. The White House. Office of the Press Secretary. Interview of the President by Yonit Levi, Israeli TV. July 7, 2010.
3..Annual Threat Assessment of the U.S. Intelligence Community for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. Dennis C. Blair, Director, National Intelligence, February 2, 2010. p. 13.
4..United States Government Accountability Office. IRAN SANCTIONS. Impact in Furthering U.S. Objectives Is Unclear and Should Be Reviewed. December 2007. p. 1.
5..Congressional Research Service. Iran’s Nuclear Program: Status. Paul K. Kerr. September 18, 2009. Summary page.
6..The White House. Office of the Press Secretary. Statements by President Obama, French President Sarkozy, and British Prime Minister Brown on Iranian Nuclear Facility. Pittsburgh Convention Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. September 25, 2009.
8. Ibid. .
9. Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Speeches. Pelosi: ‘This is the Strongest Iran Sanctions Legislation Ever Passed by the Congress.’ Thursday, June 24, 2010.