Clearly I am not the only one who sees oil as the most significant piece of leverage in the West’s negotiation with Iran over the development of its nuclear program.  Regarding Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, Marc Sumerlin writes in the Weekly Standard:

The most important policy would be to announce without delay a coordinated release of strategic petroleum stocks led by Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman and International Energy Agency executive director Claude Mandil. Global government-controlled petroleum of IEA member countries could offset about 20 months of Iranian oil exports–a figure that should not only make Tehran nervous, but could also allow for an over-release, providing more oil to markets than was taken off-line. A coordinated oil release would shift supply from religious fanatics to known allies and demonstrate that oil vulnerability can be a two-way street. During the Persian Gulf war, a release of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve was announced on the same day that the war began. The price of oil fell by one-third over the next six weeks, as the military action proved successful. After Hurricane Katrina, the administration waited five days to announce a coordinated release of strategic oil–a period too long for traders experiencing pain with every tick.

Full article here.