Stuart, how is Carter's intervention with ROK nuclear program an example of long-term thinking while Bush/Obama/Trump intervention with Iranian nuclear program is not?
As for the recognition of the annexation it's more like using the window of opportunity. Arabs can bitch and moan all they want, they need the US far more than the US needs them.
Well they had a deal didnt they? And they threw it away, because it was the wrong KIND of deal. Now they are desperately foundering around for another deal and the iranians, entirely predictably, are telling them to go spin on it. That is not exactly long term thinking going on here.
As for Saudi Arabia getting the bomb, could you see the White house as things stand stopping them getting it? I dont think so. They would have less concern for regional implications, than ensuring that things just dont fall apart on their watch.