In 1979, the new theocratic government in Iran intiated an international crisis when it allowed a group of students to blatantly violate international norms by invading the US embassy in Tehran and taking its staff members hostage. The Carter administration rightfully decried the actions as “not just a diplomatic affront,” but a “declaration of war on diplomacy itself.”

Now comes word that just as Bush was finishing his speech, the US launched a raid on an Iranian consulate in the Kurdish north and detained five of the Iranians working there. Am I wrong in understanding that, under international law, this is technically an invasion of Iran? If that’s the case, doesn’t that count as a major escalation of the war to a second front?